CHARITY AWARD FOR ANDOVER LETTINGS OFFICE

A property lettings agency in Andover has run away with a national award in recognition of its charity fund raising efforts for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Greg Greatbatch, who owns the Belvoir office (along with brother-in-law Phil Pinkney) on Winchester Street in Andover was declared a Charity Champion at the Belvoir annual ‘High Achievers’ award ceremony, staged at the Belton Woods Hotel, near Grantham, Lincolnshire.

The Belvoir Bronze Award recognises the contribution made by Greg and his colleague Emma Bevan who both completed a gruelling sponsored race in support of Belvoir’s company-wide campaign to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Greg explains: “We ran the 2012 BUPA London 10.6k in May last year, which was on the same course the Olympic athletes used. Over ten thousand people took part in the race with a number of famous runners including Mo Farrah.

“Emma started training to get fit for her wedding, which was in early June and I was recovering from physio on my knees following an old cycling injury.

“The day of the race was absolutely beautiful, but it was also the hottest day of the year and running in a temperature of 26 degrees meant the heat was more of a challenge for us than the actual course. We had to keep swerving across the road to try and find some shade as relief from the heat.

“Our donations were from a variety of people, including our landlords. We raised £687.20 for Macmillan, which was a great result but unfortunately, we couldn’t beat Mo Farah who won in record time!”

At the company’s annual awards evening, co-presented by comedienne Ruby Wax, Belvoir’s Chairman, Mike Goddard, said: ”Greg and his partner Phil Pinkney run their business with a real commitment and passion for community involvement and this is a tremendous achievement. The money raised through Greg and Emma’s gruelling run has given a considerable boost to Belvoir’s commitment to Macmillan.

“In February 2011, we aligned ourselves with Macmillan to raise £10,000, and in that first year I was pleased to announce we had smashed our target and raised £16,000. This year I am delighted that we increased our total raised to £25,013.67. What a fantastic achievement!”

On receiving the award Greg said: ”We are absolutely delighted with this recognition. We knew we had been shortlisted for an award and we were thrilled and excited just to be nominated as finalists.

“We owe a lot to the many people who sponsored us to help us smash the £500 target we had set ourselves!”

Tanya Taylor, a fundraising manager for Macmillan, said: “Greg and his team have made a major contribution to the overall sum raised by Belvoir over the past year.

“Thank you so much – this money will make a real difference. One in three people will get a cancer diagnosis at some point in their lives and there are currently two million people living with cancer in the UK.

“We currently support half of these people and every penny that you help to raise is greatly appreciated by everyone at the charity.”