NCH Caerphilly Children’s Centre, has been handed the keys to a brand new 13 seater coach, courtesy of Stonegate Pub Company, the owners of Kings Arms in Caerphilly.

The coach is one seven being donated to schools and children’s organisations around the UK by the pub company following a five month charity fundraising campaign for Variety, the Children’s Charity. All 614 Stonegate pubs took part in Britain’s Biggest Pub Tour, the most ambitious fundraising campaign ever carried out by pubs before, raising a staggering £312,000.

Joining Carolyn Jones from NCH Caerphilly Children’s Centre for the presentation of the Variety Sunshine Coach were Jake Polmear and Phil Livsey from Stonegate pub Company, Kate Williams and her team at the Kings Arms and representatives from Variety, the children’s charity.

The centre houses multiple agencies, who work in conjunction to provide essential support to children with a wide range of physical, learning, medical and developmental difficulties.

The coach will be used for a range of activities across the multi-agency team, from daytime transportation to and from the centre’s Assessment Nursery, to evening usage for the Shared Care and Outreach programmes. The coach also has a tail-lift to enable easy wheelchair access.

Carolyn Jones, Service Co-ordinator of the Families First Pathway to Inclusion Project at the centre, said, “We would like to send a big thank you to Variety and Stonegate for donating towards a new mini-bus to be used at the Caerphilly Children’s Centre. The Centre offers services to over 1000 disabled children, young people and their families who live in the Caerphilly Borough. We are very grateful for the continued support of Variety – this is our third Sunshine Coach and our commissioners and the local authority recognise the huge added value that it provides for our services here.”
The donation was made possible through the fundraising efforts of Britain’s Biggest Pub Tour. A giant pledge passport was passed from pub to pub travelling 5,555 miles and involving all 12,000 Stonegate Pub Company employees. The original fundraising target of £100,000 was smashed within weeks of the summer long tour, eventually becoming biggest single fundraising event ever for the charity.

Variety Chief Barker, Trevor Green, said: “The achievements of Stonegate Pub Company and its customers has been nothing short of phenomenal. We are truly grateful on behalf of the many youngsters and their families who will benefit from their fundraising. Britain’s Biggest Pub Tour has been the single biggest fundraising challenge ever undertaken for Variety, the Children’s Charity and has meant that we can provide seven specially adapted Variety Sunshine Coaches to schools and community groups in the UK as well as fund life-changing equipment for many more children and young people.