If you’ve ever wondered about how to raise money for charity, then you’re in the right place!
In this episode, we speak to Neil Hailwood who is an absolute mastermind when it comes to fundraising. He talks us through some of the many ideas he has had to raise funds for charities such as Derian House and Inspire Youth Zone
Neil has a busy full time job, yet he always seems to find the time to go above and beyond for causes that he cares about.
He also talks to us about his son, Matthew, who is a child with special educational needs and the challenges that brings, along with the amazing support he gets from his whole family including wife Tracey and daughter Lauren, who he often ropes in when planning and organising events.
He has raised money for charity in so many different ways including a virtual ‘Play Your Cards Right’ event, the Santa Dash, ChorFest and many more.
In total, Neil has raised over £100,000. He is such an inspiration, so dedicated to helping others and we’re sure you’ll be inspired by him – we certainly are.
Welcome to Give Social, a show about helping you improve through inspiration
Each week we discuss things that make your heart sing through stories interviews and debates everyday normal people do amazing things in business charity or through self improvement and we are here to celebrate them. my name is rob and I’m Jen so if you’re looking for authentic down to earth and practical help to build a better life than we welcome you to the show and just to make sure you never miss an episode or one of our bonus podcast that we might throw in from time to time don’t forget to subscribe through your preferred podcast provider it’s easy and more importantly it’s free now let’s get on with the show.
So today we’re talking to Neil Hailwood who by day is an enterprise solutions manager but he does an enormous amount in his own time for various local charities he absolutely puts the fun back into fundraising and so we wanted to bring him to the show to share his story and hopefully leave you with some tips and advice if you want to fundraise for good cause Now we’ve got to know Neil over the last few years we spoke to nail in a previous episode about some of the stuff he’s been doing during Covid 19 which we’ll touch upon again I’m sure in today’s show but first let’s find out a little bit more about the man himself so Neil first of all hello thank you for joining us on the show today let’s start off with you telling us a little bit more about who you are the day job and a little bit about what life is like for Neil Heywood.
Before we do that it’s important that people subscribe is this right to give social world world We’re on YouTube or on Twitter at face book – we’re everywhere we need more this is really important Neil’s doing the advertising for us I like it I like it. you can play that in future weeks as well as fine so so it for my job and it’s really weird could buy background I started off in in the accounts world and I got really bored of the of the month by month numbers especially when the numbers didn’t Loog very good. so I moved into the I. T. world twenty four twenty five years ago for a company called AMEC which was based out of Adlington, which was about two miles from my house perfect now I’m based out of London and I go there two or three times a week and sometimes I see on the train you might we might bump into each other give each other a wave . So I look after Morgan Sindell is a construction infrastructure company I would build lost of house just round the corner from her actually and we do lots of work. I Look after about eight thousand users every day on commercial financial procurement HR payroll systems Oh how fun not really I mean a generally means if my phone goes off someone goes Neil – It’s not working so but today we’re on holiday the phones off it’s all good today excellent I’ve been a twenty four years I’m very believer if in work if you don’t enjoy doing what you do do something different.
I left at my last job because they were moving from Chorley to Blackburn and I thought I’m not doing that Crazy I now I do forty thousand miles in the car and spend half the time on the train as well and I absolutely love it and there’s a real thing isn’t the Jenna about we being that we talked about this last week getting up to do a job that you absolutely love yeah I think it’s it’s it’s meaning and purpose behind what you do and if you if you either believe in what you do are you passionate about it just makes you daisy doesn’t it and when those problems come up they just easy to do without I can imagine you Neil being just one massive barrel of laughs at work all day – if people are on the right side. I have my bad days generally I think all of the team that I work with from my boss and the directors to the people who work below me, we all enjoy work and we’ll get stuck in a general all the time the phone goes off because something isn’t working but even with that, we just got stuck in and we work really hard and enjoy each others company so tells a little about by now Neil at home tells a bit about your family where you live what you enjoy doing in the spots on so
I’ve been married for twenty four years again to Tracey Hailwood who I met at school at the age of thirteen I think I found her bag one day from school it went missing I was a prefect. She was 2 years below me and I was a hero what are the age of fourteen which is incredible because I think I’m still hero now but she might disagree with them we departed – we went to a couple of times but then at forteen I decide that you’re just too young for me so I move on to playing snooker and then when I was about twenty two we met again and we got married and we’ve been married twenty four years which is on a challenge for heranyway. Fantastic – inspirations to us all I think we’re reaching ten years Married this year. It’s a good test I’m glad you didn’t say 8 or 12. It’s an easy one to remember come on it’s all round numbers Robert. I do remember them yes your wedding actually your best man speech yes yes making making an appearance in an episode soon I’m sure I’d l expect nothing else. yeah I’m married with two children now. I’ve got Lauren who seventeen presently studying to be a surgeon at Runshaw college so she’s doing chemistry oh no Wish I’d not said this one – chemistry maths and something else she’s gonna go mad but she’s studying three subjects and she wants to become a surgeon yeah she does There you go. Wish i’d said that now. and then we’ve also got Matthews who’s thirteen in two weeks time
Matthew is a a special needs child he goes to Mayfield high school he is one on his own. He has significant learning difficulties Very little speech He has no safety around them and in fact one of the tales is around shouldn’t say this because this is really bad parenting. We came back the woods one night on our daily exercise and we was in the garden and before we knew it Matthew just disappear from the world . We dint know where he’s gone right. So I’m looking on the garden shouting Matthew, Normally you know he can hear his voice is always very noisy not was but just noise and he doesn’t know and I looked round the garden. Lauren went upstairs. Nowhere to be found. Tracey went to the front of the house and he was Halfway down Carr Lane Literally wearing this green jacket that would just come out I legged it after him There’s cars every where thinking Oh my god this is horrible. as it happened, he just stood still when I shouted from some pleasant words saying Matthew stop. I’m this must be a challenge for you I imagine incidents like that. it’s all day every day he has a carer – three carers but he’s two to One so whenever he goes out there’s people with him yep so it is a challenge for it we don’t look as a challenge anymore really it’s just just the situation really is just parenting to Matthew who is different to Lauren but we don’t look at it like that. Other people come in and say how did you manage and we don’t look a lot like really weird because you just kind of see day to day process you don’t put mobile phones on the desk That would not happen if Matthew was here because he’d have them and he’d be calingl nine nine nine within seconds the cups on things you just yes everything everything – I mean he’s broke three iPods a DVD players a plasma tv – they’ve all been broken by Matthew, but we we don’t look at it that way. It’s just the way matthew is and we deal with it every day and it’s just a part of life . so I though that this morning when he woke up one o’clock and we couldn’t sleep until quarter to six.
So you would think that with the job that you have working in London living in the northwest dealing with such high demand within the workplace and then going home and having what is it sounds like an absolutely fantastic supportive family that you have plus the challenges that come along with Matthew and and everything that goes along with that that, that would be enough for you both actually one of the things we’re going to go on to talk about now is all the all the things that you managed to squeeze into your day your week your month I’m absolutely I just do not know how you do it all so let’s run through some of these things with you now last week we talked about just a couple of things during Covid so in the last episode we talked a little bit about play you cards right just tells a little bit more about what you did with a play your cards right. it was it was an idea I had . I love Chorley. I love family and I love Chorley you will never move me away and so I help out at Chorley football club in the supporters lounge and we’ve been playing play your cards right before the games and sometimes after the games as well but I think this case will be I was trying to drink more beer. I’m seeing things on facebook can across social media people doing singing and doing magic tricks and things like that I can’t sing unless it’s sweet Caroline and I can’t do magic so I thought this is a bit different so we went on Facebook live just to see if we could do play your cards right and the idea was everyone got an number who entered I went on the super computer which is a mobile phone it’s not really super and they just randomly draw a number and that person will be given out they then have twenty second to give me a call and then it’s thye start off at ten cards trying to higher or lower down to one card and if they won, they won some great prize Pizzas being delivered we had MOT’s use we have to guilded Lilly provided a she’s invite Margaret was Amazing. She gave thirty five bouquet of flowers every week for twelve weeks in one hand and deliver them wherever they were Brighton was a step too far. She decided to get soemone else to do them for her what people are like that – that’s why I love the town, because people just come together to try and do something to help out it was twelve or thirteen weeks I’ve no idea whether it would work Tracy said it was mental Lauren said let’s just do it though I am a Matthew just said no but he says that to everything and we we did that and made a donation wouldn’t not gonna charge for it was just trying to do something that was fun because even though the lockdown kind of easing a little bit now, there was nothing for anybody to do it was a Sunday it was six o’clock songs of praise had finished what what else do you do, so we went on Facebook live some episodes lasted half an hour one went on for about an hour and ten minutes because people just wouldn’t win and it was just a bit of fun than the feedback we got for it was really got the ball the the cleaning of the kitchen took two hours before and we have to knock it on the head at some point.
It was a Deep clean every single Sunday but that that’s the thing that’s what we find some interesting about what you’ve done is you’ve you’ve seen an opportunity of seeing what’s working for people you’ve seen what’s going on social media through all this time and it grabbed it just taken the opportunity you know quick turnaround stuff but its worked it’s it’s been really successful and I think he did pretty well fundraising that in the end. I think it was just short of three thousand pounds but when you’re throwing ten pounds and five pounds it all adds up to the minute we went from the first week of it was forty fifty people played to the last week it was like over two hundred I mean to the people to slow down we have prizes for the kids that they’ve gotten drives in lightning McQueen cars full of treats and stuff. it’s just just good when people come together and sometimes you just needs that one person to trigger it just to like let’s do this is a good idea to have people go along with it and and you’ll always the person who triggered the on the deal yeah so why says anyway but yeah we do have it we we see all the time I mean I’m a resident close to where you live in the north west of England so whenever there is a charity event for particular charities, there’s always one person is at the front of it and it’s you isn’t it so what else we had during Covid was live in isolation yes tell us about life in isolation it was his disappointment we had such a measures amazing event this year We were going to do ChorFest and we have some of the best tribute bands across the U.K gonna turn up. They were booked and in the bag and local artists as well to give them an opportunity too it was just gonna be great then along comes the disease everything gets put on stop so it costs us quite a bit of money in fairness – LEt’s not talk about that so what we decided that only two or three weeks before was OK, we’ve cancelled the event well let’s see what we can do differently so we contacted some local artist and a couple of tribute bands and they said yup they’d be more than up for doing something live again Facebook which seem to be the place to be and that brings lots of challenges yeah we did a Friday night and will be hard an 80’s Singer from Newcastle county she was brilliant we had a meat loaf tribute on Friday night and we’re running lots three four five hundred people all viewing yeah which was really and I had no idea I’m in my conservatory, that was made up as like studio I have no idea what the people watch or not but in fairness we raise another three thousand times I’m looking at some of the local businesses it was torn in different offers from Frederick’s ice cream to the spinners Caroline who joined donations as well we have a special bear that was being provided for us again I’m very much Chorley and district person I spoke to these people they got involved and we just had two really really good days yeah and it wasn’t – We made three thousand pound it would have meant a lot more than that for Derian house and inspire youth zone if it had gone ahead, yet but it couldn’t go ahead to run do not let’s not waste opportunism let’s do something.
So the original idea was this event the followed on from something that happened I think it was over Christmas where you had a a Christmas Carol another crazy idea who we were during last year’s jingle all the way I will talk about jingle away shortly will but that’s an annual that we do, but we during that enough we had a conversation with regressive because what what I realized when Lauren was at Holy Cross was this Christmas performance where they had singers is in the brass bands and I really enjoyed it was part of Christmas and she left (Boo), so I had nothing to look forward to I even tried to make it to the Holy Cross one was doing on the My mind goes in strange ways thinking well let’s do it all ourselves it was like four weeks before Christmas yeah we can do this so I literally spoke to a million Choirs to say do you fancy this – fully booked, fully booked and I met and had a conversation with my old PE Teacher, Miss Eccles and she said she thought the rock choir for Chorley, Lytham and Wigan and they do it I thought this is ace, so I got them I got a lady from Leyland call Jennifer came along and then we got young local band who did the guitar and stuff and we just that we sold out by three hundred fifty tickets Chorley little theater. I’m thinking this is crazy because five to seven the doors open we still don’t know what it would I was trying to rehearse about the intro to it I’m thinking oh my god. All these people here what we’re gonna do but again that night we raised something like £1700 for charity at and it was literally thrown together – We were still plugging speakers in a five to seven because it finished like two week run of the pantomime the night before on the place when we went in was just – stuff everywhere so cleaned it all of which is an ever the cam just a really good time. I remember the last line of the night singing old old Lang Syne and we got everyone up to sing old Lang Syne was whatever happens in twenty twenty, let’s make it a good one we’re in August and no one can go out. If that’s my fault I’m really sorry but let’s make the best of it. yeah it was it was good event and I think I’ve enjoyed it and we’ll try do something again in this year if we’re allowed. so there are the things around Christmas that you done so you’ve mentioned the jingle all the way which we can talk quickly about but then there’s other things like the Santa dash as well so talk us through a little bit about your involvement with that. it’s it’s really – I started this.
It’s a sad tale really because my good friends son died at eleven with Cancer and that’s how the whole Derian House thing started, but a bit strange, I remembered I think I need to do something. This is always emotional for me, so bare with me. I made a promise I do soemthing every year just to give something back because my life is quite good have a nice life – I have challenges in life but we’re all healthy we are all good so I thought rather watching Netflix and even though I do like Netflix – modern family if you’ve not seen it, watch it, very good. I thought if I could give some time of my life each night just to try and put something back into us we started events back in two thousand twelve with a bite ride where 70 people went to skip ton – my brother’s house then cycled back to Chorley the year after with thought lets do some really stupid lets walk to Blackpool tower and back which is fifty nine point seven miles on that one second did that in Nineteen hours and twenty minutes I have still got blisters and it’s eight years ago the year after because I was a bit of a challenge we did the same routes but we did half of it on bikes and off of it walking which go hundred people involved so this is really difficult let’s do some much more easier to get more people involved as we came up with with that – Me and Tracey, Lauren and Matthew was walking up to Rivington I remember really clearly Tracey goes mad when I think about on walking up on Good Friday which was the traditional things going on a member walking thinking wouldn’t this be ace with loads of people dressed as Santa. Tracey going no it wouldn’t and Lauren going yes it would dad. And Matthew is going Nah. We spoke about it all the way there and all the way back she went go on then. so rather than doing it in December time which always dead close to Christmas parties and sometime you go on these sponsor things and just do it and then you come back it’s all done at once but I wanted spread as a good start the morning with then went up to Rivington all dressed as Santa with music Christmas music played out which is really random in November where you’ve got white we wish it could be Christmas everyday with six hundre Santas following along.
It’s a great time to kick off this was the end of November yeah I love Christmas I love Chorley and I love Christmas well it was just really the spectacle and if you think the first year we had a hundred and forty seven people joined unless she was in the fourth year we had just short of six hundred and it’s just I mean we raised over that period of time up to last year, we raised just over a £100,000 which is not bad is it so all right absolutely fantastic tell us a little bit about what it takes to put together a community event like the santa dash give us give us the reality check Neil of actually how much work goes into organizing something like this. last year for the first year I actually got a little note pad out and made notes about almost almost spend on it under the three months prior to it we spend something like 250 hours I was out of work time that’s yes I’m in yes but when it was 250 hours just by made on a computer at night what when you working full time and I do have a busy job when what when times get favors in from people that are all over at home and may not want me bugging them, so it’s generally all email and text message I wasn’t speaking to many people through the hire company through the toilet guy wou provided some because it was all via text by simply follow its lead what can you say you can do this this and this and it just every night was pretty relentless in the 3 months, before I’ve never said no to be anyone who wants to help other. I won’t some control freak I lot to know what’s going on on a lot because I if I’m doing a lot to do things properly and I just I I have a good support team of people never no. They are really random people, because they always say ayes Neil at them I haven’t yet asked them a question so they said yes before I’ve told them what I want them to do and we’ve got a really good support from support drivers to people sponsored events to throw money at it I’m asking for money and they don’t even know what it’s for and they just go yep or whatever you want I’ll just give you can blah blah blah yeah and you build so that trust then with people in the community who know that when Neil Hailwood puts on an event it’s going to be raising money for a good cause and it’s going to be great fun. yeah I think erm it is when we look at the jingle all the way everyone looks forward to that each Christmas I mean I I emailed Sir Lyndsey Hoyle about two weeks before the event last year because he was bit busy trying to get the the speaker of the house job at which he got yes he actually came back from London last year on the Friday night just to be a jingle all the way before he went back to London on Saturday afternoon for the remembrance Sunday he had to be out on the Sunday morning London so you think that well I I’ve not doubt he came to see his wife as well we really came back just see me dressed as a santa I’m so you say that you love charity we can see that all these events you also said you love Chorley now for those who don’t know chill in the northwest of England little Lancashire town he also has a football club Chorley football club I over the last year so you’ve taken much more active all in Chorley football club as well from a I know you’ve been supporting Chorley for many years but now somehow some way you now have which more of an active role with them as well yeah I don’t how that happened I just went up again I want to do someone a favour I love Chorley football club supported them forever with beat Wolves in the FAC CUP nineteen eighty six it’s getting further and further away but we did it and it was amazing but I’ve always followed Chorley all ways followed my local team and then last year I was talking to the couple of commercial team on the owner and I wanted to try help out so I said what can I do and they said can you host the lounge for all the sponsors I went yeah whatever and I went to Florida came back on the date I landed back about nine o’clock in the morning at the first home game in the National League I thought oh no Gotta be there within two hours literally got off a plane came home about eleven o’clock went Straight to Chorley football club then i’m stoof there playing play your cards right in front of a hundred sponsors. I think everyone experience I’ve a good relationship with the owners and the manager just trying get something back again.
The wife not quite happy about that, she thinks I should just go five to three to watch the football and come straight back as soon as it’s finished but I got her a ticket over the Christmas period she came She had some turkey she quite happy, she knows I was working. so this is this is another example that way there is just another community within your community that you’re there fronting up, bringing people together making sure all the let’s be, let’s be honest about this Chorley football club for those who don’t know the league that there and we just got relegated it’s a shame. so they’ve just been relegated from we got relelgated from the National League and we’re back in the National League north which is still a very good challenging Division yep and I’m how many people do they have attended each week watching supporting. It’s changed in the last ten years ten years ago was getting 200 – 300 people and then we’ve got a big resurgence. 3 promotions in ten years and we’re now on relegation. Average crowd about eleven hundred people yeah which for Chorley thats’ surrounded by Preston Wigan Bolton Blackburn United City Liverpool you can carry on yes a good crowd. when we talk about raising your money you tend to as a rule the money tends to get to Derian house and to the inspire youth zone yes that right yeah Inspire youth Zone is local in Chroley Derain house again another amazing local charity so just tell us a bit more really about your connections to Derain house and I think you know it’s eight something like four point eight million a year to run and less than ten percent of that is through statutory funding so obviously t’s really important that people do take the time to fundraise for charities like this so tells a bit more about your connection with Derian House. with Inspire when we were kids there were youth clubs weren’t there. we could go – a safe environment where you could go spend the nigh – your Parent knew where where you were and it was good They seemed to of like gone away so inspire is somewhere you can where you can go on you you’re in a safe environment a five a side football pitches of climbing walls the have pools tables. the place we can go as and time with friends and new friends and partly funded from the by the district’s local councils but they’ve to make the rest one of the money themselves. just a nice place to go whereas Derian House is is place where its a shame and it’s hard talking about it.
But it’s where will people go – they’re going to die at some point and it is hard to discuss so when you think I don’t have to deal with 400 children a year that are on the end of life or they are in for repite care and they get Need £4.8 million every single year to survive and they get ten percent. Everything else is three things like charity events. There’s a man two weeks ago who walked from Westminister bridge to Derian House 247 miles and he walked it and raised six thousand times six thousand pounds is an incredible amount of money yeah it’s also a very long way to walk. yes But things like that happen every single day so if we if we can just do something that brings a pound. one pund, that pound it goes to the amazing charity helping families enjoy the time they’ve got left with the children and also when did you go for respite care because I know how difficult it is when you’ve got a child in the twenty four seven you can go for one night and just give the parents one night for a nice meal somewhere yeah I can’t tell you how much that means to them parents, because it is a challenge yeah we all lives lost love ones I’m very often through life you are at some point going to experience a death in the family that normally in the end in normal circumstances you would expect that that would be a grand parents ,a parents but that thought of it being a child or one of your friends children – That fills me with the can’t even start to comprehend what about most feel like And this place Derian house it offers it offers the glimmer of hope in an environment where they know that the being for, the parents can as you say take a bit of respite, as well as the child I think I’m it it Derian house is an amazing place because you can go and I’ve always felt uncomfortable going beyond the front door I do get emotional and trust me I’m a big softy, big lad, but I’m a big softy. They do amazing work it’s the happiest place in the world – the children and not to not sad they’re very happy in happy environment of swimming pools they’ve got a brand new movie centre there – it’s just amazing place you don’t see people walking around all miserable and negative it’s a positive vibe the second you walk in the plus from the staff to the children it really is amazing I mean it was nineteen ninety one the haydock family created it they had two kids Derek and Ian and the combined them to names to get the word Derian which is where it came from M. and the had to raise twenty five thousand pounds to put a fork in the floor to stop the build and then handed over to a lady you took it to another level but the celebrations of the thirtieth anniversary next year so they’ve got to something special yeah because it is a lot of money they need to raise – you can’t underestimate that how much money that is – a lot of charity walking it’s a lot of charity events I’m but they also do things They will send families to Ribby Hall village where they can spend to a three days there with a family in environments not your home home so they might not be able to go in to Derian for the respite but they have a nice area to go to Ribby hall and they have 2 apartments there and the family’s go to take some time away from life and it’s just a really I can’t tell you how positive a pace Derian is – It’s a sad place to go, but when you’re there it’s amazing that the positivity around is incredible yeah what we’ll do is we support all of that and these these charges meant a lot to is is part of the reason why we do this podcast in the first place is to bring all of this conversation to forward all the inspiration that people need just to understand how important it is that there are organizations that you know that need that support so we’re gonna put a link into donate into the websites so that people can get straight through if they if they feel as though it’s something they want to support so just going back obviously we’ve talked about how you balance it all with you you’re busy day job in a busy home life and you’ve mentioned Tracy and and and your children so is the whole family involved in supporting you in this is it something that you just drag them into something they proactively help with I’d like to say that they proactively gets involved with apparently like a Train I run straight over them before they got a choice to say anything. and they’re involved and they have no going back as the older Laurens got, she’s a she’s very similar to her dad and she just comes along with on the journey with me she loves it, so but but we bully Tracey and she just comes along but everything we do is is completely as a family.
My number one thing in life is is the family. I go to work so we can have a nice life that’s what we do a lot of these things at night. I mean we spend our lives in Blackpool just taking Matthew on the beach he loves it on the beach flying his kite, even though he let’s it go when it’s really windy and wipes about twenty people out. we do everything as a family and that includes charity work. I’m just here for the looks and the personality and we talk about this quite a bit I’m in our older episodes and Jenna took to ponder before around this purpose and passion stuff and and it’s so much easier isn’t it yeah I when you’ve got a family around you it will also involved with that and this is something that we we really strongly believe in as a couple we what we do outside of work we want to be able to do that together and although some people will look and say you’re doing more work you you finishing work and then you get in home you turning your laptop on and you making phone calls and you’re organizing events and you do event planning and you doing fundraising what when do you get time to switch off and some people would genuinely be concerned about your own well being and welfare and I and I get this quite a lot with Jenna when with the stuff that we do people say you know how do you switch off but I find that strength in family unit that collective passion that you all hold for something really does help do you find that as well? I think I am there’s a big thing about mental wellness at the moment and absolutely one percent get and that I’m I’m the first person who sent the text of the phone to to to people trying to find time for all the people that I know on their own some of my team that I work I know their on their own that the young people growing up and I’ve made times weekends to speak to these. in fairness one bloke rand me up who you know and the phoned me up and said Neil I’ve seen play your cards right. I’ve seen this I’m just phone up to check that your okay could you as about everybody else but are you okay? I know who that was because that same person rung me as well today we have the same conversation so and and that was nice but me and Tracey have a very very very strong relationship everything we do and our families and we talk every day in fairness, we had one cross word in twenty five years and that was in Ibiza another story it had something to dow its Sweet Caroline and a lot of a lot of vodka. but we’re just a strong family, we talk about everything we have no secrets it does help a lot and we both work very hard, Tracey worked for Royal Bank Scotland for twenty eight years she was a senior person there and that finished a couple of years ago and now works in a leadership role in the police if I’m allowed to say that I don’t know Sorry Tracey We talk everything will work hard we play hard, but our families number one and everything we do for charities it’s there, it’s always there but you do like it the night time when kids is a sleeping. so I think there’s so many people out there who will be inspired by what you’ve done it will be inspired by all the money that you’ve been up to rise he will be sat scratching their heads thinking how does he do it I’m I’m just interested because it doesn’t always all go to plan does it so tell me something about maybe what’s the worst thing that’s happened in planning or running one of these events give us a story – it can be funny can be sad to be absolutely disastrous book let’s put a bit of reality around how difficult organizing things like this all and what can happen.
We haven’t had we haven’t had the much output and I try to avoid any disaster I spend a lot of time thinking what if what if what if I lots of events in August sun should be shining in blue skies you walking to Blackpool, walking back to your cycling somewhere and the the biggest disaster would probably never stop raining and I made the decision that one of the things we would do two buckets of water we carry these two buckets of water up rivington and back, but it never stopped raining. The bloke I remember him a rugby play Andy Ridealgh just said pass them here Neil, I’ve got this and carried literaly all the way to Riving ton and back. The biggest disaster we had is the Covid just because the amount to much time of putting into Chorfest was much more than we put into any of the chairty events arranging from all the different licenses because it’s gonna be a good decent event with three or four thousand people a year so it’s been relentlessly for the forms in which is the right thing to do because all the council police emergency services need to be happy with everything you do and I’m they were about to get to that position I am from paying all different licenses that you need to go out and and all the people selling the tickets yet and then I think it’s a people gonna come Are going to buy these tickets and then they do we think about now got two thousand tickets got sold and they start hearing this thing in China’s going on the background about November, December time thinking that won’t come here. in January thinking oh my god spent like two grand and then in march thinking this isn’t gonna happen then we go on lockdown and that was it was emotional time to close it to say we can’t do this yeah but it was the right thing to do yeah and then you press the button saying refund checks thinking oh my god this has just cost me £2000 yeah and we’re not getting it back but again you you take the risk with that. Everything we’ve ever done we’ve tried to we spend so much time trying to work out what if what if what if and we always go overboard with things rather than doing it trying to do things proper I said that before before trying to do things properly mmhm like it’s a proper proper job even though it’s not paid just only disaster we had was with it’s not as a disaster, it was Covid that was hard to take but at the time one of the bands said why you cancelling so early I’m going because if this isn’t going away it’s here and it’s here for a while and he wouldn’t give me the £400 back – see he’s not booked next year – he’s cancelled. we haven’t had any disasters – the disasters says daft we do it with a smile it rained rained rained rained never stopped raining for twelve hours – it just didn’t stop raining, but we were all smiling in the pub at the end of that day. It is hard work I mean will be presently in the process of arranging this year’s jingle all the way and now we’re doing it is it is going to have to but we know where we are today yeah and when they can go ahead but we’ll plan that it’s going to happen to get 6-700 in one place at one time walking 15/16 miles together in different stops …. it’s gonna be a challenge to do and we’re we don’t what’s gonna happen not but we’re planning today like it’s is going to happen on the fourteenth of November. So what three pieces of advice for anyone looking to run the events in that community or do some fund raising have you got for people who might just either starting out or if they’ve done things previously, but want to try something different have you got any advice to all? I would say the biggest I was not a charitable person before starting these events I didn’t really do charity events that’s enough time for charity events never mind arranged and then something struck me with little lad dying and I thought I have to do something.
Do something that you’re passionate with a reason why I passionate, because it it mainly means makes a difference if you just do something because it’s a trendy thing to do it takes too much time you’ve got to be passionate about what you do. Derian house is very very passionate for me so we make sure do everything we possibly can to raise money for them and if you don’t have that – if you don’t care about set you won’t do a proper job with that and I absolutely put everything to it. Never said no to anybody If someone if someone says can I help yeah you say yes yeah don’t you might not know what is going to be and you will get if you if your passionate about it you’ll get lots people saying I will help you. never said no. even if you don’t what their gona do never said no. if its taking photographs or pouring cups of tea. if it’s driving a van for ninety hours and twenty minutes while you walk to backpool and back – you’ve got to say yes to every bit of help you can get you’ve got you’ve got to care about what you do and it is not the you just won’t work you’ve got it I exaggerate the point but Derian House means the world to me yeah I have only ever been there to give certificates out – I struggle to go into the place as I said before but I can so much about it You can see what it mean to me yes and other people do as well and they think I’m crackers but it just means the world and if you do that you got passion they will go with it that if you say yes to everybody at that will come and support you. Makes your families with you cause if you’re on your own you gonna struggle. I do push on on finances trying it money but Derian house appreciates the awareness they get well it’s not it’s not all about the moment so many people in Chorley who’ve done these events starting I didn’t;t even know Derian House existed I didn’t what it was I’ve kind of heard it somewhere I’ve mentioned but yeah and the awareness that Derian house have got out of these events is incredible so do something your passion about yep and and and people come with you I’m not and that’s one of the things that we hopefully will be doing through this show to support charities like Derian house and support people like yourselves as well is is that awareness because we talked about this in our very first episode about what does it mean to given people ultimately think that give means giving whatever money you’ve got left to throw in a bucket or to donate online and sometimes it’s about giving anything that you have either physically or within your capability that can help somebody else who really needs it I imagine your job crosses over so much in terms of the skills that you have that you can apply to raising money and organizing these events yeah I think it does nothing I don’t come across as organized but I’m quite an organisaed person at work people turn up to charity events they just think that went really really well I really enjoyed today of that they won’t think Neil spent two hundred fifty hours was putting this together to make sure you have a really good day yeah. That’s what people and and people do depend a fifteen twenty quid to join in rock up to get us on santa outfit, get a medal and walk 15 miles of the couple the blisters I think that was believed to be the good they won’t think Neil spent three and a half months arranging toilets arranging first aid read yes there’s one lad comes every year – my brother’s brother in law comes up he works on Snowden’s so comes up to do the walk with us with a rucksack on these ready to pounce if anybody goes over anytime yeah but he lives in Snowden and travels up at 3 o’clock in the morning of the the events yeah he gets home by midnight because he’s there supporting it because he can see and I ask them to do it yeah and he goes yes he doesn’t;t know he doesn’t know any of the details he just goes yes and I have so many people that do that and spotlights just could be let me know when you when when you set off on a journey like this you thinking… the first thing I actually did was I ran a 6K in Astely Park for sport relief probably two thousand eleve,n two thousand twelve now I’d not run six miles for a long time and probably wouldn’t do it today. but it raised £200 so you think two hundred pound two to £104,520 hundred and four thousand five hundred twenty quid which but it is not the account every single – It is a lot of money and when you think how much they need it’s a drop in the ocean to what you actually need but we’re trying to do our bit. brilliant and this is your opportunity now to tell us what’s Neil’s plans coming next know what have you got coming up what what are your plans for the future it can be something you’ve already gotten the pipeline or tell us about some of the crazy ideas that you the things that you
I would love to do in the future and we’ll see if in some way we can try help do that as well. I think we’re gonna try and keep doing the jingle all the way now it’s been a spectacle for Chorley. I think people enjoy it – See it as part of the the Christmas lead up like we said before so I think that will be good if we can keep going with that – there’s a question about this year, because of the world pandemic thats knocking around, but will still have a go about doing something Chorfest. Hopefully next H. Chorfest will come off. We certainly gonna have another go – again we don’t know what’s happened in the world but we’ve already started plans working with the council at the right dates because we don’t want to do something in the same time that we do something so plans started there. I can’t tell you how much fun last years of single sing a song for Christmas was. It was a really good atmosphere Where everyone is joining in with the Rock choir – they were brilliant we will have another go at that. one of the people I work with Paul Kay on these things he is is very passionate about doing sportsman’s dinners and things like that. to want to do something is anything really that trying to be a bit different we have a drive in movie that we tried to pull off and unfortunately sue to lots of different reasons we had to pull which was a shame, but the timing was all a bit rushed to try to get in place so we got to pull up, but I think that would be something fun for the future we could try I’m all of the trying to do something a little bit different when you think your waling up Rivinginton thinking let’s get six hundred people dressed as santa that was just an idea that came to a head when we made it happen and things like a spark in my mind. I wake up at 3 o’clock in the Morning with a pad at the side of my bed and write it down and then in the morning can’t even read my own writing and well there’s always something we can do and I like to soemthing a bit differently.
I Like to do it properly. Like the fun elements of everything we do I know its a seirous cause we raise money for but you can put the fun into it people will put more money into it I mean does one lad when we did the jingle all the way last year walked form Chorley to just gone to adlington and Saw a bus. He jumped on the bus, got everyones money on the bus. the bus was going back to Chorley and he had to walk all the way back again to catch us all up, but on that bus, he got like £150 – went through everybody pockets and said come on and give me the money for that I thought oh no I’ll just go back to miles and had to come all the way back again. Another one where we walk in the middle of the road which is completely wrong you should do this dressed as Santa, but 2 police cars and I think this is not good – we’re gonna get shouted at do not know and the guy in santa outfit would not let the two police cars go past incidents we both the officers money and everything and about £200 from them. I think that went all right. It’s just the little things that I you remember that are good and it’s just the just good fun days out. and that’s what Chorfest would have been if that had come off as well. Brilliant thank you Neil we really really appreciate you spending time with us this morning sharing little bit more about you and everything that you have done I think on behalf of both me and Jen, we just wanna site well done keep it going – if there’s anything that we can do to support you please do let us know please come back to us in terms of promoting anything that you doing – we will make sure all that on the link to this podcast on the link of the website on Facebook we will put plugs out to Derian house if you’ve got a particular links you want people to follow will make sure that they are on there was well and we’ll make sure that people in Lancashire know everything about the events that you’ve got coming up in future so thank you very much. And don’t forget to subscribe – gives social – Search for it, you’ll find it subscribe Press the red button and it will go ping. And if you press the bell you won’t miss any notifications. exactly. thank you Neil and so it’s time for us to finish for today but we will be back next week with another episode and we call wait for you to join us so before then why not join our Facebook group give social or head on over to our website give social dot co dot UK we’ve got some special things lined up subscribers as well and Facebook followers we’ve got giveaways guides and three tips so don’t miss out. see you all next week for more give social. Bye Bye