Arts Derbyshire


Derby car dealers help drive forward children’s charity with new partnership announcement

Derby car dealers Pentagon Vauxhall are getting into the driving seat of a much-loved children’s charity after announcing a new partnership.

Staff at the Vauxhall dealers on Pentagon Island will be undertaking a range of activities to raise funds for the Derbyshire Children’s Holiday Centre.

The charity has been going for 131 years and offers five-day seaside stays in Skegness to children from the county. Children are nominated to go to the centre, known affectionately as ‘Skeggy home’, if they come from households where either financial hardship or other issues such as caring for relatives mean they might not otherwise get a break.

Pentagon Vauxhall, which has 80 employees, will be offering customers the chance to pay five pounds to the charity when they buy a car. Staff are also currently donating to the business’s appeal for presents to give to children attending the centre this December, and further fundraisers are proposed over the coming months.

General manager Ashley Worrall said employees had been given the chance to choose a charity for the business to support and the Derbyshire Children’s Holiday Centre emerged as the favourite.

One employee, Nathan Monk, who has been working in the parts department for the past 28 years, has also taken part in every ‘SkegVegas 100’ – the charity’s biggest annual fundraiser, in which cyclists pedal the 100 miles from Derby to Skegness.

Keen cyclist Nathan, who rides his bike to work and also regularly undertakes a long ride at weekends, said: “I’m really proud that my company and my charity have got this new partnership. I really enjoy cycling and so doing the SkegVegas 100 is a win-win. It’s just a good cause.”

Nathan said this year’s charity ride to Skegness had been particularly enjoyable because of a new route that took cyclists along quieter back roads. He said looking round the centre on arrival in Skegness had also brought home the special place the charity has in many Derbyshire people’s hearts.

He said: “All the rooms at the centre are themed  and it’s just a fantastic place. I really enjoyed looking round.”

Samantha Hunt, HR manager at Pentagon Vauxhall, said: “The charity means a lot to us. Children are at the heart of our community and here at Pentagon we’re a family site. Most of us do have children and that’s why this charity particularly appealed to us.”

Alan Grimadell, chair of the Derbyshire Children’s Holiday Centre, said: “We’re enormously grateful to Pentagon Vauxhall for their generous support of our charity. Buying a car is an important purchase for many people and it’s great to see that this dealership in the heart of Derby is allowing car buyers to donate five pounds to us at the same time. The staff at Pentagon Vauxhall have really got behind the Derbyshire Children’s Holiday Centre and every penny they raise will help put more smiles on the faces of youngsters when we re-open in 2023. Not just that, but donating presents for children who are attending the centre in December will really help give them a Christmas to remember.”

The charity has a special centre in Skegness which accommodates a bus-load of children from across Derbyshire every week, between March and October. Closed for two years during Covid, it re-opened in 2022 and hundreds of children from across the county have been able to have a week’s stay by the sea this year.

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