Scottish driving adventure raises £60,000 for the Foundation | Norwich City Community Sports Foundation

Story added: 26th April 2022

The second Credo Asset Finance Canaryball Rally sees teams complete the NC500

Fundraisers made an epic 1800-mile road trip from Norwich to Scotland and back last week, helping to raise over £60,000 for the club’s Community Sports Foundation.

Organised by local business Credo Asset Finance, the Canaryball Rally challenged teams to drive the famous NC500 route – a 500-mile coastal loop around the far north of Scotland.

The original Canaryball Rally in 2019 followed the route of Norwich City FC’s famous UEFA Cup run by way of Arnhem, Munich and Milan, raising £70,000 for the Foundation’s #BuildTheNest campaign.

It was only fitting then that this year’s rally started from beneath the shadow of the new hub building at The Nest, the Foundation’s community facility in Norwich.

Nick Chopping, a member of the Foundation’s Down’s Syndrome football team, waved the starting flag as the teams set off on their first leg up to Perth in Scotland.

The 24 cars, all emblazoned with Canaryball rally graphics and the logos of their sponsors, included a Lotus Elite 1975, McLaren 720S and even a vintage Morgan Roadster.

Along the five-day trip, the teams were treated to stunning beaches with crystal clear seas, hidden lochs with snow-capped mountainous backdrops and dramatic vistas around every turn.

Stops along the way included Loch Ness, John O’Groats and the picturesque Applecross peninsula, with hotel stops giving the chance for teams to meet up for drinks and meals with their fellow participants.

On the final evening of the challenge, with the NC500 loop completed, the teams reconvened one last time for a celebration dinner at a hotel in the heart of Perthshire. There, Emma Fletcher-Dungay, the Foundation’s Senior Fundraising & Events Manager, announced to the teams the news that the rally had far surpassed the original fundraising target.

Back in Norfolk and reflecting on the rally, she said:

“It was an incredible few days. The route was absolutely stunning and we were so lucky to be treated to blue skies and sunshine every day.”

Emma continued: “The teams were all amazing, and it was great to spend time with such a lovely bunch. To hit £60,000 raised is phenomenal and is a testament to so much hard work – they all hit really ambitious individual fundraising targets. We can’t wait to stay in touch with them all, and to show them in-person how the money they’ve raised will help changes lives in Norfolk.”

She paid special tribute to the team at Credo Asset Finance. “Months of planning and countless hours of hard work went in to ensure it would be a success, and it really showed. It was a pleasure to work alongside them, and we can’t wait to do it all again in 2024!”

Among the various teams were some partner organisations of the Foundation and The Nest, including Ovamill, Massimo Sky, Norfolk Hire and Avant UK.

Raimo Ala-Korpi, managing director at Avant UK, said: “We had great fun and have created some memories that will last forever. I can’t express enough our gratitude to the Canaryball Rally team for their hard work before and during the event.”

Ian Tims, Managing Director at Credo Asset Finance, said: “The rally has been incredible! We would like to thank the many local companies that sponsored and supported the rally.

“Simon Gray, the founder of Credo, who we tragically lost to cancer in 2020 would be very proud of the money raised. It was fitting one of the teams competing was Simon’s wife Tracy and son Will in a team called ‘Simon’s Sidekicks’.

“We are already thinking of venues for the next rally in 2024.”

Fran Brown, Marketing Manager at Credo, said “After the success of the first rally through Europe, we wondered if we could top that, but the route and scenery was just breathtaking. It’s a long way from Norwich but the camaraderie between the 24 teams, all coming together to raise money for this brilliant cause made all the planning worthwhile.”

Money raised from the event will help the Foundation to sustain and increase their charitable work to drive inclusion for people with disabilities, boost mental health and wellbeing, and inspire disadvantaged people.

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