The Junction Tap, Woking, has been shortlisted as national finalist in the Front Line Support category of The Great British Pub Awards – Pub Heroes.
Cee-Jay Williams, the General Manager of the Junction Tap, raised £1,237 which funded the printing of over 4,000 units of PPE, including face shields, nose clips or ear savers, to protect those on the frontline fighting COVID-19 in hospitals. Looking for something to both occupy himself and to do something productive in the fight against COVID-19, Cee-Jay soon came across a story on Facebook of a group in Italy using 3D printers to adapt diving masks into protective gear. Inspired by this initiative, and with some bonus money that he had saved, he bought his own 3D printer and joined the UK’s 3D Printing community on Facebook.
Once production was up and running, Cee-Jay managed to speed up the printing process, getting the time it took to print 22 clips down to 2hrs and 24 minutes and was soon printing all day and night. He then expanded capabilities again by printing both the face shields, ear savers and nose clips needed for the masks, depending on what was most in demand. He also purchased his own sterilising kits so he could send everything directly to the hospitals, sterilised and individually sealed in Ziploc bags.
The Great British Pub Awards Pub Heroes recognise and reward the incredible efforts by pubs during the COVID-19 pandemic. In spite of the lockdown and being forced to close their doors, many pubs remained at the heart of their communities, providing help and support in many different ways. With over 600 entries across fifteen categories, the shortlisted pubs will now face a public vote to be crowned overall winner.
Each winner will be offered the opportunity to submit an application for up to £10,000 each to fund a business improvement or upgrade or to put towards a community project. Additionally, Coca-Cola will fund a further £1,000 donation to a local charity or good cause supported by each of the winning pubs.
Cee-Jay Williams, General Manager of The Junction Tap, said: “When lockdown began, and I think I can speak for a lot of people in our industry, I felt a bit directionless. We are all so used to being at the centre of our communities and the people we serve day in and day out, to have that suddenly taken away leaves a big hole. When I heard that there was a deficit of 80,000 clips that were used to attach the protective plastic visors for doctors and nurses working closely with coronavirus patients, I knew I wanted to help.
“After some trial and error, I perfected the technique of making these clips and had soon made over 1,000 units in the first day. I knew I could do more. I set up a GoFundMe page with a target of £200 to help us buy more filament and fund production of more and more clips. I also made some NHS keyrings to sell to help bolster the fundraising, which helped us to far surpass our target. It was amazing how many friends and Stonegate colleagues got involved, with nearly 50 individual donations pouring in. Keith Treggiden, who is the manager of Slug and Lettuce, Rendezvous and Royal Oak in Weymouth, even donated for a bulk order of keyrings that he delivered individually to each of his staff members on his bicycle to help lift their spirits.”
“We are now at the mercy of friends, family and our customers, to vote for us! Please get online, follow the link below, and vote for the Junction Tap!”