Matt has raised £4,286 for Macmillan Cancer Research and successfully conquered the booze-free Sober October challenge. The effort has seen him place fifth in the fundraising rankings out of the 34,217 people who took on the challenge.
He received donations from family, friends and colleagues at Midlands-based developer the Deeley Group – but it was his local pub, the Four Provinces, which provided the biggest fundraising boost.
The Four Provinces in Spon End agreed to donate £20 every time Matt visited the pub and didn’t order an alcoholic drink, which resulted in a total of £600 being donated over the course of the month.
Matt has seen mental and physical health benefits from giving up drinking, including losing a stone and a half in 31 days, better sleeping patterns and reduced stress levels.
His pint of choice is Guinness and despite giving the alcohol-free Guinness Zero a try during the month, Matt is looking forward to getting back to The Four Provinces for a pint of the black stuff.
But Matt says he won’t return to his normal drinking habits after seeing the benefits of drinking less alcohol.
Matt said: “I am completely overwhelmed to have raised this amount of money considering I am just a bloke that decided not to drink for a month.
“The first week I would say was the most difficult because you are changing your habits. I could never be a hermit and wanted to see my friends at the pub, so when The Four Provinces agreed to donate every time I went into the pub that was a great excuse to go and socialise.
“I have definitely seen benefits from not drinking. My sleep had been poor for quite a while but now I am sleeping soundly for six to eight hours a night.
“Also, whilst my mental health has always been quite good I have noticed a massive improvement in motivation and feeling fresh in my mind which has lead me to exercise more and generally feel better.
“I have managed to lose a stone and a half in 31 days. I always used to think my younger brother had a better metabolism than me – turns out he just didn’t drink as much!
“This has taught me that I don’t have to have a drink just because I’ve gone to the pub and I do think I will cut my consumption down now.
“The most important thing was that after two weeks my mental health improved so I would urge anybody that is feeling a touch stressed that the option of no drinking for a bit is a great option.”
PICTURE CAPTION: From left to right – Alex Cearins (Four Provinces owner), Matt Lynch and Christy Brown (bar manager).
The Midlands developer, which is headquartered in Coventry, has achieved Carbon Neutral status for its reporting period of May 2020 – April 2021 and has been working in partnership with industry experts Carbon Footprint Ltd to put measures in place to achieve net zero by 2036.
The family-owned construction and development firm is now in the second year of measuring its carbon footprint.
From May 2020 to April 2021, the firm produced 12.1 tonnes of CO2 per £1 million spent and offset the CO2 produced by donating to a wind project in India.
The construction and built environment sector is one of the larger producers of emissions, but Deeley Group will be using targets supported by scientific research to drive down its emissions.
Deeley Group has already introduced sustainable measures at its headquarters as part of its commitment, including the installation of EV charging points, solar panels, rain water harvesting measures and PIR lighting.
As part of Deeley’s roadmap to net zero, created in partnership with Carbon Footprint Limited, it will be implementing a host of measures over the coming years.
This will include introducing electric vehicles across its fleet, installing LED lighting at head office, work to Future Homes standards and providing incentives for staff to use greener transport methods.
The UK Government has launched its Net Zero Carbon Procurement policy recently and this requires firms tendering to government and related bodies to annual measure their carbon footprint and reach net zero carbon by 2050.
Deeley Group is aiming to reach this target 14 years earlier and will publish its progress annually.
Eleanor Deeley, deputy managing director at the Deeley Group, said: “With our targets we will be looking to go above and beyond the latest definition of net zero and will be working in partnership with Carbon Footprint Ltd to reach our objectives.
“While we continue to work toward net zero carbon status, we will continue to offset our carbon to ensure we are having a positive impact as soon as possible on the environment during the process.
“It’s important that businesses, regardless of their size, act now and take vital measures to protect the future of our planet.
“We will be working closely with our clients to ensure that sustainable practice is being followed at all of our developments and contributing to our ultimate target of being net zero carbon by the time the company celebrates its 100th year.
“The target date of 2036 is ambitious but it is a challenge we are ready to meet.”
Dr Wendy Buckley, co-founder of Carbon Footprint Ltd, added: “I’m delighted to see Deeley – as a responsible construction business – taking leading steps to achieve net zero carbon emissions way ahead of the UK’s target date of 2050. An example that I hope many other businesses in this sector will take note of and follow.”
Midlands-based Deeley Construction has been appointed as the principal contractor for the development which will cater for the needs of both students and professionals in Bath.
The site, on Jews Lane, has undergone significant enabling works over recent weeks but now the construction of the new buildings has begun.
It will comprise of two new buildings, one which will house student accommodation and the other offering 5,000 sq ft of flexible open plan employment space.
The student accommodation building will feature 63 flats, including a two-bedroom studio and a dedicated reception area. It will cater for the growing student population in Bath, particularly the significant number of international students attending both universities in the city.
Planning permission was granted for the development in September 2019 and it is set to be completed in Summer 2022.
The open plan employment space will be totally flexible, with the ability to be sub-divided to cater for a number of potential uses.
Ross Chester, Development Manager for Deeley Freed Estates, said: “We are pleased to be able to progress this development after a challenging few months and look forward to delivering the high quality student accommodation and fully flexible workspace.
“The enabling contract has been completed successfully, including working closely with Network Rail to ensure works around their embankment have been delivered safely.
“We are now looking forward to working with Deeley Construction to ensure the development is ready for the student intake in Autumn 2022.”
Martin Gallagher, Managing Director of Deeley Construction, added: “We’re pleased to be working again with our long-standing partners Deeley Freed Developments Ltd on this project and to extend our rich working history with the company.
“This is a mixed development comprising residential and commercial space and we have been involved at an early stage to advise on fulfilling pre-commencement planning conditions.
“As a trusted and respected Midlands developer, we are pleased to be expanding our footprint in Bath and our on-site team will ensure there is as little disruption as possible to the surrounding community for the duration of the project.
“A key objective for the project is to provide new jobs for local people and work experience for students, so are working closely with the local authority and Bath College to deliver these targets.
“It is a challenging site and we have been working closely with the client to reach a position where new-build construction can start on site. It’s fantastic to see work now underway.”
PICTURE CAPTION: Andrew Truswell (Box Twent), Ross Chester (Deeley Freed), Martin Gallagher (Deeley Construction) and Steve Turner (Deeley Construction).
The company came away from the 2021 CoventryLive Business Awards as winners of CSR Project of the Year, sponsored by Barclays.
The award celebrates businesses going above and beyond in their corporate social responsibilities.
Deeley Group’s win of the CSR Project of the Year prize was in recognition of the valuable work the business has done in the community in recent years and the development of charity events, including the successful Starley Sportive charity cycle ride.
The CoventryLive Business Awards saw hundreds of members of the business community come together to celebrate the successes of the region’s businesses over the past year.
Winners were decided by a judging panel chaired by Marc Reeves, Midlands marketplace publisher for CoventryLive’s owner Reach plc. He was joined by Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce’s trade director Ajay Desai, CityFibre’s regional partnership director Leigh Hunt and Barclays’ business banking regional manager Kurt Pollard.
The ceremony held at Coventry Building Society Arena was hosted by TV broadcaster and weather presenter Emma Jesson.
Deputy managing director Eleanor Deeley was on hand to receive the award on stage at Coventry Building Society Arena and said it was recognition of the positive impact the company has made on local communities in recent years.
She said: “Over the past 85 years, the Deeley Group has always looked to ensure it leaves a sustainable legacy in the communities it works in.
“This ranges from working with local charities and schools, to standalone projects supporting important local causes and organisations.
“We would like to thank the judging panel for recognising us with this award and it is testament to the hard work and dedication of our staff.
“Deeley Group will continue to engage with our supply chain to add social value wherever possible on our projects across the Midlands.”
Stonemarket has agreed a five-year lease for 2,000 sq ft of first floor offices at George House on Coventry Business Park with owners the Deeley Group.
Bromwich Hardy partner Michelle Mills, who acted for Deeley, said the deal showed the continued resilience of the office market in the wake of the pandemic and the growing strength of Coventry as a target business location.
“Despite all the reports throughout the pandemic predicting the demise of the office, there is still plenty of demand for the right building in the right location.
“These offices at George House are a clear case in point. They have been developed to the highest standards, are superbly located on Herald Avenue on Coventry Business Park and boast excellent road, rail and air links close to hand as well as an established, respected landlord.
“New research has shown Coventry is – and will be – the sixth fastest growing city in Europe between 2020 and 2025 and we are certainly seeing evidence to back this up. It is becoming a magnet for ambitious companies who want to reflect their own ambitions by being located in a region with real dynamism and vitality.”
Michelle said a 6,000 sq ft ground floor suite at George House was also available to let for around £106,000 a year– with interest already strong.
This is a self-contained suite with its own entrance and comes with two meeting rooms, fully fitted kitchen and break out area, 30 parking spaces and impressive green credentials including solar generated electricity and a ground source heat pump.
“It has everything that a modern, ambitious and forward-thinking company could need.”
Nick Sharpe, managing director of Stonemarket said: “George House is a great location for our team, giving them a modern office to work from and hold meetings.”
Eleanor Deeley, deputy managing director of The Deeley Group, said: “We are delighted that Stonemarket has selected George House for its relocation; this move reinforces our belief in well located, sustainable and flexible office space.”
For more details of the ground floor offices and Bromwich Hardy visit www.bromwichhardy.com
Five students from Riverbank Academy joined contractors Deeley Construction, headquartered in Coventry, on-site as work neared completion of a new state-of-the-art teaching block to help the school cater for growing demand for its services.
Ryley Ilsley, Mason Bennett, Jamie Farndon, Filip Liviu Niculae and Opoku Gyamfi were all given an insight into working in the construction industry during work experience at the project.
The new building will feature three new classrooms, three bespoke outdoor soft play areas, two hygiene suites, an internal soft play area and the school’s first ever purpose-built fitness suite.
Students in the 16 plus programme at Riverbank Academy are given opportunities to explore potential career paths so they have a good idea of the profession they would like to work in when leaving the school.
Ryley Ilsley, aged 17 from Radford, said: “My experience on site was really good. Construction is definitely something that interests me and could be an option I consider for the future.
“I enjoyed visiting the site and learning about the finances and costs involved in a project like this. It will help the school a lot to have a building like this and it was great to be involved in the project.”
Jamie Farndon, aged 18 from Longford, said: “It was interesting to look around the building as it was being built and follow the work.
“While construction isn’t something I necessarily want to work in I took the opportunity to learn about marketing and everything else that surrounds a development and it was exciting to be involved.”
David Lisowski, Head Teacher at Riverbank Academy, said: “We pride ourselves on adding value where we can for our students, such as building independence and introducing our students to employment opportunities in preparation for leaving us.
“Deeley Construction has been very accommodating and proactive in offering us both on-site and virtual work experience opportunities for students.
“As a school we are now at more than 180 students and continue to grow to meet local and national demands for SEN school places. We approached Coventry City Council and they provided us with the funding to build this fantastic new building.
“It will benefit all staff and students at the school, providing more space for our existing educational provision and giving us further scope to enhance and expand our curriculum.”
Work is nearing completion on the new teaching block for Riverbank Academy and students and staff will be moving in from October.
Martin Gallagher, Managing Director of Deeley Construction, added: “We are always looking wherever we can to give young people a window into what it is like to work in our industry and developing the next generation of construction professionals.
“The students were a pleasure to have on-site and it was great for them to be able play a small part in the building of the new teaching block for their school.”
PICTURE CAPTION: From left to right – Steve Turner (Deeley Construction), David Lisowski (Riverbank Academy), Jamie Farndon, Martin Gallagher (Deeley Construction), Steve Adams (Deeley Construction), Ryan Ilsley and Marie Manusell-Stewart.