Ten miles of fundraising fun with Deal Direct Blinds

A team of intrepid challengers took to the region’s streets on Sunday 7th July, embarking on a ten mile walk in support of St Oswald’s Hospice.

Staff from Deal Direct Blinds in Gateshead, who are members of our hospice Better Together Business Club, were joined by friends and family to form a 30-strong team, who started their challenge in at The Lambton Worm in Birtley. Kitted out in St Oswald Hospice t-shirts, with branded St Oswald’s and Deal Direct water bottles to aid hydration, the team were prepped with snack packs of treats to keep them going.

Birtley was chosen as a starting point as it was exactly 10 miles from the hospice, which is where the walkers decided they wanted to finish their challenge. The team brought along some canine companions and even a sheep… yes you read that right! Deal Direct are proud owners of Sweetie, one of the Shaun the Sheep sculptures that had been on display in aid of the hospice, across Newcastle over the summer of 2023. Deal Direct Blinds boss Ed bought Sweetie at the Shaun on the Tyne Auction last year and she is now a fully-fledged member of the their team – so much so that they pulled her on a trolley through the streets so that she didn’t miss out on the fun!

Samantha Blackbird is Deal Direct Blinds Marketing Director, where she works alongside her dad Ed and sister Joanna. She was the driving force behind the sponsored walk, so we caught up with her to find out more about the day. She said:

“We planned the ten mile route to go through Birtley, then Low Fell and Gateshead town centre, over the Tyne Bridge and up Northumberland Street and then up past the Town Moor, through Gosforth to then finally, to the hospice.

We had great fun along the way, running into shops and bars and asking people to make a donation in our charity buckets. We stopped off at Gateshead Arms pub to refuel and get a pint for the team, where we then had a call from BBC Radio Newcastle and had some air time to shout about the hospice and tell them about our Just Giving page.

Our walk finished at the hospice, with welcome from Jill from the fundraising team, and after posing for photos, we headed into town for some celebratory drinks. It was so amazing! We all felt great and there was many tears along the way as I told stories about the hospice and what it is they do and how wonderful it is.”

Thanks to the generosity of Deal Direct customers and the people of our region who the walkers met along the way, the team raised a massive £2115.50 so far, with more donations still coming in.

Samantha added:

“As a company, we are so inspired by the work St Oswald’s do so we will continue to do all we can to fundraise for them. I’ve got the Great North Run coming up in September but also hope to take on a Three Peaks climb in the Lakes with some of the team too!”

Thank you to everyone who took part and to those who sponsored the team.. We love working with companies like Deal Direct and it’s an honour when their people take on challenges of their own like this, in support of our patients and families. We really couldn’t do what we do without your support.

If your company would like to get involved with supporting St Oswald’s Hospice, or would like more information in becoming a member of our Better Together Business Club, we would love to hear from you! Email the team at bettertogether@stoswaldsuk.org to arrange a chat or even a visit to the hospice to see more of what we do.