Hitchin based homeless charity North Herts Sanctuary has been given a boost to its funds by one of town’s biggest employers, Willmott Dixon.

Staff from the company’s office on Park Street, which employs over 120 people in the region, raised over £4,000 for the charity by taking part in the Three Peaks Challenge and switching their suits for casual wear for occasional dress-down days. The final total raised was increased to £4,700 by a contribution from the Willmott Dixon Foundation, which has been created to help Willmott Dixon make a lasting contribution in local communities.

Managing director at Willmott Dixon’s Hitchin office, Chris Tredget, says, “We made North Herts Sanctuary our Charity of the Year in 2011 and encouraged staff to take advantage of our volunteering policy where every employee can use 15 hours of paid time to do something positive in their community. We had over 20 volunteers use this time to clear redundant equipment from the charity’s premises and give the communal areas a fresh coat of paint.”

North Herts Sanctuary provides hostel accommodation for the single homeless from across North Hertfordshire at its base on Nightingale Road in Hitchin. The cheque was presented by Chris, who continued, “I’ve been really impressed with the enthusiasm of our people in getting involved and raising money. We’ve decided to continue with North Herts Sanctuary as our charity in 2012 and have started fundraising again.”

Willmott Dixon, one of the country’s biggest construction companies, has been associated with Hitchin for over 100 years, and currently has its regional head office in the town.

Gboyega Adetunji, service manager, North Herts Sanctuary, said, “We are very excited that Willmott Dixon is continuing its support of the Sanctuary this year. The fundraising and decorative work they have done has helped us improve the environment for our clients and build on the success of the Sanctuary's staff in assisting our residents to "move on" to permanent accommodation.”