Over the next few weeks we’ll be sharing the amazing stories of our 12 winners of the first ever Co-op-wide Thank you for Being Co-op awards. Will is a team manager in the Transport department at Birtley depot. Here’s his story.
“Winning this award has made me feel proud to work for the Co-op. I got quite teary reading what people said about me. I don’t think it’s sunk in. I’m a bit overwhelmed.”
Will Hall has Co-op in his blood. His mum, dad and sister all worked for Co-op and Will has just celebrated 21 years at Birtley depot.
When Phil Turner, a colleague at the depot, suddenly had a stroke Will was the first to step in and help.
Phil’s wife was understandably upset so Will called in at their home the very next day and took her some flowers.
This was the start of his total dedication to helping Phil and his family in any way he could.
When it became clear that Phil’s road to recovery would be a tough and costly one, Will started a collection box at work and continued to visit the family offering support and reassurance that he wasn’t going to be forgotten about.
Once he was a bit stronger Will brought him into work so that he could catch up with his friends and colleagues to boost his spirits and give his wife some much-needed rest and time on her own.
“I’m responsible for 16 drivers in transport here at the depot,” explains Will. “Phil is not one of my drivers but we’ve got a bit of personal history in that our daughters were in the same running club. I don’t think I can express how much of a good bloke he is. He’ll do anything for you.
“When something like this happens to someone so fit, so active, so popular, people do come together and think – that could’ve been me.
“I don’t feel as if I’ve gone over and above. I feel as if I’m just helping somebody who needs help. It’s me giving him a little bit back.”
Not only has Will made visits to Phil’s home every week, he’s arranged two fundraising walks to help pay for Phil’s ongoing physio. Already he’s managed to raise over £1,000.
Only last week, Will and colleagues from Birtley depot walked the Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, where amazingly Phil managed to join them for the last couple of miles.
“The amount of money we’ve raised I think is testament to how popular he is – people are still dipping into their pockets now. Everyone at Birtley depot has been so supportive.”
What colleagues said about Will
“Will has throughout this matter gone above and beyond what I would expect from a team manager. He truly gets the impact this has had on the family and has gone out of his way to show that he and the business care about our people.
“This is not an isolated case either. He regularly raises money through many different charity events for different colleagues, local charities and the community. He is a great example of a Co-op manager and someone who absolutely personifies the very essence of Show You Care.”