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Green fingered Thomson staff support local stroke survivors

Press release -

Green fingered Thomson staff support local stroke survivors

Kind-hearted Thomson staff rolled up their sleeves and donned their gardening gloves recently,
to support stroke survivors in the local community.

A team of six staff from the Doncaster and Sheffield region of the holiday company visited two
families in Sheffield. They combined their skills and provided their own tools to completely overhaul the families’ gardens, cutting back overgrown plants and grass.

The visit was organised in partnership with the Stroke Association, the chosen charity of the year for the north division of Thomson and First Choice. Four members of staff from the Sheffield, Doncaster and Rotherham branches along with two regional managers for Doncaster and Sheffield all volunteered to help.

Stroke survivor Mark Stevens and his family in Hunters Bar were among the families who received
support. Mark had a major, life-threatening stroke in 2013 and thought he would never walk or talk again. A 57 year old father of five, Mark lost the complete use of his right arm and hand and was left unable to walk, read or write and could barely speak.

His wife Jenny said: “Until you or someone close to you has a major stroke you have no idea how devastating it can be. The garden was completely out of control as we have not had time to do any gardening since Mark's stroke. The Thomson team cheerfully worked their way through the mass of overgrown scrubs and weeds that had been growing unchecked for 13 months. The front of our house now feels much more open and light and has given us a great boost."

Russell Thomson, Retail Manager and Charity Champion at the Thomson branch in Sheffield said: “We’ve supported the Stroke Association as our charity of the year for two years running because of the great work the charity does to support stroke survivors and their families.

“We were keen to help make a difference to those affected by stroke in our local community. As an organisation, staff are encouraged to take part in Discovery Days to enable us to volunteer in the local area, which provided us with the perfect opportunity.

“As we’re a team of travel agents, we aren’t specialists in gardening but we borrowed tools and a lawn mower from friends and family, and thoroughly enjoyed helping to make a difference to the families we visited. It was a very rewarding day.”

Jo Beverley, Regional Fundraiser at the Stroke Association, said: “There are around 152,000 strokes a year in the UK – that’s around one every three and a half minutes. We’re so thankful that the Thomson team have chosen to support us as their charity of the year through fundraising and
volunteering. The fantastic work they’ve done in our service users’ gardens will have been a huge support to the families.”

Thomson has been raising vital funds for the Stroke Association since October 2013, with a sponsored zumbathon and recent sponsored 10 mile walk through the centre of Sheffield
raising more than £4,000.

For more information about stroke visit or call the Stroke Association Helpline on 0303 303 3100.




A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are around 152,000 strokes in the UK every year and it is the leading cause of severe adult disability. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke.  
Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and we’re leading a community of people to change the world for people affected by stroke.  We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at 


Press contacts

Angela Macleod

Angela Macleod

Press contact Communications Officer Scotland press and Stroke Association research communications 0131 555 7244
Laura Thomas

Laura Thomas

Press contact Communications Officer Wales 07776508594

Scott Weddell

Press contact PR Manager Stroke policy, and Northern Ireland activities 02075661528
Ken Scott

Ken Scott

Press contact Press Officer North of England 0115 778 8429
Martin Oxley

Martin Oxley

Press contact Press Officer South of England 0207 566 1548
Sokina Miah

Sokina Miah

Press contact PR Manager Fundraising and local services 0207 566 0337
Katie Taylor

Katie Taylor

Press contact Head of PR & Media This team is not responsible for booking marketing materials or advertising
Out of hours contact

Out of hours contact

Press contact Media queries 07799 436008

The UK's leading stroke charity helping people to rebuild their lives after stroke

The Stroke Association. We believe in life after stroke. That’s why we campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best possible recovery. It’s why we fund research to develop new treatments and ways to prevent stroke. The Stroke Association is a charity. We rely on your support to change lives and prevent stroke. Together we can conquer stroke.

Stroke Association
City Road
EC1V 2PR London