GAS Boosts Local Foodbank Thanks to Generous Staff

The Group led a two-week appeal to support the vital local service, which is based at St Hild and St Helen Christian Fellowship , Dawdon, just a couple of miles from Great Annual Savings’ HQ on Spectrum Business Park. In total, more than £600 worth of food was donated to the Foodbank, which gave out more than 400 emergency three-day food parcels 2015.

In total, more than £600 worth of food was donated to the Foodbank, which gave out more than 400 emergency three-day food parcels in 2015.

GAS partners Spennymoor Town FC and Independent Stella and Dot stylist Rachel Johnson joined the Group’s appeal by contributing raffle prizes and use of the club van to transport the huge pile of food to the site.

GAS has also offered the Fellowship a free full energy audit to help them reduce consumption after Pastor David Taylor explained how difficult the building is to heat.

The Group collected staff contributions for two weeks, then the Board generously agreed to match their effort and doubled the donation on the morning of Friday 16 December.  Representatives of the Group then delivered the mammoth haul to the Foodbank that afternoon.

Pastor Taylor, St Hild and St Helen Christian Fellowship, said: “There’s a great need in the community for this service, not just at Christmas, but throughout the year.  A lot of people struggle and we try to alleviate that by supporting them, signposting them and helping them move on.

“We help people with fuel as well as food by distributing seasonal vouchers.  We want people to have the basics: heat, light and food.

“Thank you to the staff at Great Annual Savings Group, who obviously recognise the real reason for the season.”

Bradley Groves, Chief Executive and Chairman of GAS, said: “We operate on national level, but our roots are in the North East and we want to be an active part of the community in which we work, which was why we chose the Foodbank as a beneficiary.

“I’m thrilled that our staff got behind the appeal with such gusto and we’re thankful for the support we received from our partners at Spennymoor Town and Rachel the Independent Stylist.

“The aim was to make a significant contribution to the Foodbank that would help a number of families in our immediate area and that’s what we’ve managed to do.  I’d urge other businesses to carry out similar exercises and people in Seaham to support the team at St Hild and St Helen so they can continue this crucial safety net.”


Watch a video of the collection and delivery of the enormous haul.

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Paul JohnsonGroup Financial Director

Paul Johnson is very much a home-grown talent.

He joined Great Annual Savings Group in its infancy, fresh from a youth career as a professional footballer with Hartlepool United.  He quickly established a reputation within the business and aced all required accountancy qualifications in the space of four years to become the Group’s Management Accountant.

Several successful projects later, Paul was promoted to Head of Finance.  When the former FD left GAS, he took on the mantle of the business’ most senior finance professional; boasting a string of incredible achievements all under the age of 30.


“I have witnessed phenomenal growth at the Group over the many years I’ve worked here and I’m looking forward to guiding the Group into an exciting new chapter.”

Interesting fact:

Paul made his professional debut for Hartlepool United against Bournemouth in the Football League.  Some say Danny Ings still resides in his pocket to this day.