Neil Hudgell Solicitors has won high recognition for its dedication and commitment to helping local community groups, projects and individuals thrive as it was named winner of the ‘Community Spirit’ prize at the Hull BID awards.
The Hull Business Improvement District (BID) Awards celebrate the city centre-based companies having the biggest impact on the area, from the best business start-up to the most outstanding employees.
The Neil Hudgell Solicitors Trust was named wined in the Community Spirit Award, in recognition of its work in supporting grass roots sport, helping to raise educational aspiration and bringing both the young and old together in their local communities.
Judges were impressed with the wide impact the many financial donations, and other support from the Trust, had on the community.
Over the past 12 months, the total amount available for community groups to apply for through the Trust was raised to £100,000 a year (from £60,000), with individual grants of up to £2,500 available.
In 2014, grants totalling close to £86,000 were distributed to small projects and groups making a positive difference in their communities, helping educate the young, bring older generations together, and support ambitious young people in realising their dreams.
Examples included a £1,000 donation to The Friends of Ings Primary School group, which helped buy equipment for a new cookery room at the school to teach children the art of cooking, and a £1,000 donation which enabled Hull HARP, formerly known as Hull Homeless and Rootless Project, to run a breakfast club for homeless people.
The Trust also handed out a number of ‘discretionary’ awards to individuals.
These helped Ambitious Holly Lewis, 23, of east Hull, secure a place at the American Musical Theatre Academy, allowing her to study in London and New York.
In the sporting field, the Trust also provided financial support to the City of Hull Special Olympics Club, which will help three gymnasts represent Great Britain on the world stage at the 15th World Gymnaestrada Games in Helsinki this July.
They are looking to follow in the footsteps of 19-year-old Natalie Moon, who claimed a gold medal in the 100m Breaststroke Final European Disability Swimming Championships in Belgium.
Natalie was able to take part in the biggest competition of her life thanks to a £1,600 grant from the Trust to cover her travel and accommodation costs. Her father Arthur admitted the cost had been too much for him to meet, and that his daughter could have missed out on the biggest achievement of her life.
Jo Hudgell, chair of the Trust, said: “We are obviously delighted to have been recognised with this award for the work of the Trust.
“Since we launched in 2012, it has been a hugely rewarding part of the business as we have been able to give back. We are proud to have been able to work and support so many wonderful groups and people.
“Our grants simply help many passionate people in communities across the city who go the extra mile for others make a bigger difference and impact. Our aim is to leave a lasting legacy across communities, and it is the people giving their time and commitment which make it happen.”
Hull BID works in partnership with member businesses to create sustainable activities that make the city centre a measurably better place to do business.