Meet the Fantastic Fundraising Five – our resident superheroes. While they’re not invicible, each has taken on the responsibility of maintaining our position as BBC Children In Need’s biggest fundraiser, using their unique gifts to secure valuable donations – from cycling to nail-art. We couldn’t be more proud, which is why we decided to immortalise five on them into a framed comic book cover befitting of a hero!
So who are these generous superhuman beings? We find out…
When it came to raising money for BBC Children in Need, our team over at Boscombe East branch took inspiration from one of the biggest shows on telly – Strictly Come Dancing. "As a branch, we are keen to do anything to help the community or indeed charity,” says Adam Phillips, Postmaster at Boscombe East Post Office.
“We have a fantastic team here at Boscombe East and are always up for a laugh and to do something a little different. That's why we thought of 'Strictly Come Posting'.” With their fancy hairdos and glitzy gowns, the team served customers for an entire day looking their ballroom best.
“I got to dust off my best suit and polish off my dancing shoes, and the rest of the team really enjoyed themselves and the community involved.”
Boscombe East Post Office team: Adam Phillips, Abbie Watts, Gwen Batrick, Joy Wright, Sheila Holgate and Peter ‘Anton du Beke’ Knight
Pals Jamie Haugh, 41, and Iain Patton, 50, cycled a mammoth 820 miles to raise money for BBC Children in Need. The pair kicked off their journey from Thurso, Scotland, and wrapped things up in Weymouth on the south coast of England, taking shelter at 15 different Post Office branches along the way.
Jamie was joined by his fellow Post Office colleagues on different legs of his journey, all of whom were inspired by his efforts to help change the lives of disadvantage children and young people across the UK. Overall, it took an entire week to complete the journey.
Jamie, who works as a Relationship Manager for Post Office, said: “The saddle felt a bit like kryptonite for the week after the cycle but it was all worth it. While it was really tough, I am so proud of what we’ve done.” So he should be!
The Post Office team at Shantallow branch – otherwise known as the ‘Shanty Girls’ – were commended for their fund-raising efforts. Armed with buckets, the team asked the public to dig deep into their pockets for BBC Children in Need - and received overwhelming support.
Branch Manager, Fionnuala Dobbins, said: "We are honoured to be recognised in such a special and unique way. Our office has become well known for striving to fundraise for charities and Children In Need is a charity very close to our hearts.
“We are hoping to outdo the brilliant effort made last year not only in the amount raised but also in the weird and wacky way of doing it – so watch this space.”
Shantallow Post Office team: Fionnuala Dobbins, Jackie Morrin, Julia McIntyre, Rachel McCallion.
The team over at Felixstowe branch brought a bit of glamour to their fundraising efforts by creating their very own pop-up ‘Pudsey Nail Bar’.
Our very own Genevieve Tuddenham spent hours carefully painting both customers’ and colleagues’ nails, adding glittering Pudsey paw prints to show their support for this amazing cause. And if that wasn’t enough, on the BBC Children in Need appeal day, the team came to work wearing onesies and Pudsey nail polish – now that’s dedication!
“We have had lots of support from colleagues at Post Office when it comes to fundraising,” said Branch Manager Angela Baldwin. “But we never expected to make the front page of a comic book – it’s a wonderful surprise and I think my team make great superheroes!”
Felixstowe Post Office team: Angela Baldwin, Genevieve Tuddenham, Pauline Horvath, Maggie Battle and Kathryn Sherman
Yorkshireman Rod Ismay, Head of the Post Office Support Centre in Chesterfield, completed a gruelling 85 mile group cycle from Pudsey, West Yorkshire, to Hull. The route was to the shape of some Pudsey Bear ears.
Speaking about the cause, he said: “BBC Children In Need is a charity that we have loved supporting. It’s something that was always there on TV when I was a child and it was brilliant that we could actively raise funds for it in our workplace.
“I was keen to find a way to celebrate with branches and keen to promote cycling for personal health and wellbeing – and suddenly saw the chance to combine these for the great cause of BBC Children In Need. It was an amazing day.”
Bake sales, raffles and children’s colouring competitions were among the fundraising activities that took place at various Post Office locations along the route, proving that with a bit of teamwork, dedication (and some colourful spots) we can achieve a lot.