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Board Member’s View

August 2019

IanI remember prior to my employment with A.F. Blakemore reading the company’s Corporate Responsibility Report and being very impressed by the way the company had not only clearly defined its purpose and values, but also how it lived its values through responsible business in action.

This has helped shape the culture within the company, which can be evidenced through the level of engagement we enjoy through colleagues ‘making a significant, positive contribution to the community’.

In the last financial year it is worth recognising and celebrating the following achievements in this area:

  • Number of donations made by the Blakemore Foundation = 7,414 (2018: 6,238)
  • Amount donated by the Blakemore Foundation = £433,901 (2018: £476,703)
  • Total fundraised for NSPCC via Blakemore Retail = £452,143 (2018: £319,046)
  • Number of employee volunteer hours in the community = 14,749 (2018: 13,094)
  • Number of employee volunteers in the community = 2,042 (2018: 1,570)

The company’s contribution to the community has certainly made great progress over the last 12 months, with a commitment to engage 25% of the workforce and support 2,000,000 members of the community in the financial year to April 2019.

As featured in the lead article of this month’s e-newsletter, our education programme, Branching Out, has also recently been recognised as the national winner at the Business in the Community Responsible Business Awards 2019.

During 2018/19 the programme engaged 3,312 young people, hosted 68 work placements, involved 46 schools with four or more interactions and involved 489 colleagues.

Congratulations to Liz Blakemore and Clare Knowles for driving this initiative, and to all of the colleagues who have supported the programme and the young people it has hopefully influenced and inspired to make a difference in the world of work, including A.F. Blakemore.

Through living our values we aren’t just doing the right thing in giving back and supporting the communities we serve as a company, but we’re developing and defining our culture, as well as driving colleague engagement and hopefully pride and enjoyment through our work.


Ian Diment
Group HR & Strategy Director

1st August 2019


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