On 27th September 2017 Theo was a judge for the Many Hands Campaign finale for a 5th year running. This year Shelina Begum, the Business Editor for the Manchester Evening news, and the Charity Chairman, Maurice Watkins, joined him on the panel. The campaign involves businesses raising £1000 in any way possible, from cycle racing to logo printing, for the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital. This year the Hospital were raising funds for a much-needed Mini C-Arm for the Trauma Unit of the hospital.
21 companies entered and 3 made the shortlist for the finals; Green Cloud IT, We Are Adam and Atlas Bar. The judging criteria came down to innovation, engagement and, of course, funds raised!
First up to impress the judges were Green Cloud IT. They had organised a masquerade ball, The Emerald Ball, to help them raise their £1000. Their ball included Jason Manford as the main act and Mike Tolan as the host for the evening. They also had parents of Children who had been treated at the hospital in attendance and raised an amazing total of £8000.
Next to take the floor were Adam Recruitment who had organised a bike race. Two colleagues rode 211 miles from Manchester to London whilst the team in the Manchester Office rode on a stationary bike. Raising money both online and cash donations the team managed to raise £3172.93 and got many of their colleagues involved in the process too!
Finally, Atlas Bar took to the stage. As a Gin bar they created an exclusive drink, the Manchester Vigil Gin. Their idea had multiple strands, which all came together to ultimately raise the money. To celebrate National Gin Day, Virgin Trains invited the bar to journey to London and back on the trains to promote the history of Gin and offer the passengers a G&T. Whilst on the train they sold bottles of their Vigil Gin to customers and all proceeds counted towards their target figure. They used collection boxes at their Free Tonic Taste Off Evenings and evening auctioned off a Gin Masterclass for six people from their mobile bar. Amongst other things, this was all supported by social media and involved the whole team, raising £3213.13 so far.
Whilst the judges’ scores were counted Theo took to the stage to do a Q&A with the audience and Hugh Ferris. He was quizzed on everything from his roles as an ambassador for the National Enterprise Challenge, to charity work, to the most expensive thing he has ever bought! He also offered business advice and spoke of the latest developments in politics.
The judges had a very tough decision to make but ultimately The Atlas Bar was crowned this year’s winner! Congratulations to all the companies who entered and helped to raise much-needed funds for the Mini-C Arm and the Charity. A fantastic evening of amazing ideas and lots of fun!