Charity scoops award for work in community

All the Cornerstone award winners at Linden Hall.
All the Cornerstone award winners at Linden Hall.

A charity set up by a Morpeth woman in memory of her son has won a prestigious award.

Jane Nattrass set up Henry Dancer Days to provide help for families of children with bone cancer.

And now the town-based charity has scooped a top community award.

Community champions from across Northumberland were honoured at a gala presentation evening for Newcastle Building Society’s fifth annual Cornerstone of the Community Awards.

Individual awards were made by each of the teams at the two local NBS branches, with the Morpeth award going to the Henry Dancer Days charity, which supports children and young people aged 18 and under with primary bone cancer right across the North East.

Henry was 11 when he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma.

“His manners were impeccable,” said mum Jane.

“We decided to set up the charity to put something positive into life after a very difficult situation and to keep Henry’s name alive.

“When we were offered donations – that momentary sigh of relief – I want to offer that to other families.”

The charity works closely with CLIC Sargent and NHS healthcare professionals to give financial grants to families throughout the UK.

Natalie Falkous, head of corporate social responsibility at Newcastle Building Society, said: “We hear a lot of stories from our customers about local people and groups who make a real difference to their community and the Cornerstone Awards give us the chance to give them some wider recognition.

“The achievements of all our nominees and their contributions to the places in which they live are truly inspiring, and helped us create a really moving and memorable event.

“As a mutual organisation, the Newcastle has always worked hard to support the communities in which we operate, and this is something which the wider Cornerstone campaign helps our branch teams to do by supporting hugely-valued charities in their respective areas.”

The Role Model Award went to Susan Dickinson, from Ashington, who dedicates her life to running a group for local children with special needs, and provides invaluable support to both them and their families.

And Real Deal Plus picked up the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation Community Group Award, for its work supporting people in need.

The awards are part of the ongoing Cornerstone Of The Community campaign which enables individual branches to provide support to good causes in their local areas in a variety of ways.