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News staff show their hearts of gold as charity haul is doubled by company

Staff from regional media business Archant have proved they have hearts of gold by raising more than £36,000 for charity last year.

Their total fund-raising of £20,369 has been matched under the Archant Gold scheme to add to almost £16,000 which was awarded to employees’ favourite charities back in June.

More than 70 staff had their fundraising efforts doubled at the end of last year.

They include Terry Mitchinson, editor of Archant Herts & Cambs titles the Welwyn & Hatfield Times and the East Herts Herald, who completed a 14-mile sponsored walk in May, raising £83 for Leukaemia Research.

Then in September, he went on to raise £110 in a 10-mile sponsored bike ride for the Mixed Group charity, which organises Christmas dinners for the elderly and lonely.

Archant London’s Barking & Dagenham Post editor Barry Kirk raised £110 for Leukaemia Research in the 25-mile London Bikeathon in July. And in June he joined forces with reporters Mark Taylor, Richard Meade, Fiona Audley and Aline Nassif in a Fun Run to raise £218 for Barking’s Shopmobility.

  • Barry Kirk with reporters Mark Taylor, Richard Meade, Fiona Audley and Aline Nassif
  • Chief reporter James Mortlock, from Archant Suffolk, raised £569 by plummeting through the air in a sponsored skydive for St Nicholas Hospice.

    Daredevil Welwyn & Hatfield Times journalist Laurel Smithson from Archant Herts & Cambs plummeted from a height of 10,000 feet in a parachute jump to raise £193 for sick children at Helen & Douglas House.

    A team of 16 plunged down the sides of the company’s main Prospect House building in Norwich.

    Lisa Donovan, Scott Hayes, Sarah Broughton, Sarah Hall, Bernadette Wapshott, Sophie Harrison, David Helsdon, Vicky O’Leary, Matthew Eastaugh, Nicholas Armour, Janice Mark, John Ellison and Shakiba Mohenshi completed the challenge alongside former employees Doug Dew, Amanda Cooper and Charlie Papworth.

    They abseiled 81 feet down the four-storey building to raise £1,032 for Nelson’s Journey, which helps bereaved children come to terms with the loss of a loved one.

    Evening Star reporter Helen Skene from Archant Suffolk raised £331 for Leukaemia Research in the Felixstowe Half Marathon in September.

    Meanwhile Comet reporter Louise McEvoy from Archant Herts & Cambs raised £375 when she completed the course with two of her colleagues – Hannah Gray and Rebecca Findley.

    Archant produces four daily regional newspapers and around 75 weekly titles with a combined circulation of 2.7 million copies every week. It is a UK top five regional newspaper publisher with a turnover of £191 million. It also publishes around 80 magazines and more than 120 websites.