STAFF at a leading UK dealer group donned their Christmas jumpers to help raise funds for charity.
More than 400 employees at the Marriott Motor Group ditched their suits and overalls for some festive knitwear and raised £1,000 for the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Trust, which supports research into the rare disease that causes muscle weakness and progressive loss of movement and is the leading genetic cause of death for infants.
The automotive company which operates 15 sites in Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds, King’s Lynn and Stowmarket, covering six brands including VW, Dacia and Skoda, held its own version of the annual Christmas jumper day on December 18 to support a charity close to the heart of managing director Paul Barnard.
Barnard’s two-year-old son was diagnosed with SMA Type 2 when he was 12 months old.
He said: ‘As a family we see and live with the condition on a daily basis and because of the support we have received as a family we, as a company, wanted to help fund-raise for the charity to help them to find a treatment and cure for the condition.
‘I was delighted that so many staff embraced the festive spirit. Everyone was so generous with their donations. I am both grateful and touched by everyone’s support.’
The Marriott Motor Group was founded in 1909 by Paul’s great grandfather from the Barnards site in Stowmarket, which remains home to its first Volkswagen dealership.
That original outlet is undergoing a major refurbishment to reflect Volkswagen’s corporate identity. The works will include improving its facilities to feature a new-look digital showroom and a larger vehicle display area to help strengthen its customer experience. The business will remain open during this transformation.
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