World record attempt in aid of Friends of the Elderly

Our Fundraising Manager Gemma Leary with Donna McCarthy, Devonshires Partner at Devonshires charity cheque presentation on 4 May 2017

Our Fundraising Manager Gemma Leary (right) receiving a cheque from Devonshires Partner Donna McCarthy.


Devonshires Solicitors has given invaluable support to Friends of the Elderly through fundraising and volunteering. Earlier this month they presented us with a cheque for over £14,000.

Following a year of fundraising, Devonshires Solicitors presented cheques totalling more than £43,000 to three chosen, local charities: Action for Kids, the Theatre Royal Stratford East, and Friends of the Elderly.

Over the last 12 months, employees at the firm have been taking part in activities ranging from bake sales to marathons to raise funds, which has been matched by the Devonshires Foundation, the firm’s charitable organisation which was set up to support charities through financial assistance and volunteering.

Corporate Social Responsibility Partner Nick Billingham said: “Supporting the local community and being socially responsible is part of our ethos, and all staff members are encouraged to get involved. After another fantastic year of fundraising, we’re delighted to have been able to present these cheques and make a difference to all the people these charities support and work with.”

Gemma Leary, Group Fundraising Manager at Friends of the Elderly said: “We’re very grateful to the team at Devonshires for their support in the last year. It’s great that they have chosen to continue that support again in 2017 through their fundraising and volunteering efforts – starting with the impressive challenge that the cycling team have set themselves!”

Now, Philip Barden who heads up the Devonshires litigation team; Nick Billingham who heads their housing management practice, and senior chartered legal executive Robert Edge are preparing to cycle 400 miles from Malin Head, the most northerly part of Ireland, down to Mizen Head in the south of the country.

Setting off on Saturday 10 June, the team will also be joined by Alastair Page from Sodexo, a client of Devonshires. They will attempt to complete the gruelling challenge in under 19 hours and 53 minutes, thus breaking the current world record.

Their fundraising target of £10,000 will be shared between Action for Kids, the Theatre Royal Stratford East and Friends of the Elderly,  which again will be match-funded by the Devonshires Foundation.

Nick Billingham said: “Cycling from the north of Ireland all the way down to the south is going to be really tough as we’ll have strong south westerly winds to deal with, but we’re looking forward to the challenge and raising money for three very worthwhile causes.

“We’re all keen cyclists anyway so have been preparing for some time to ensure we’re in the best shape to complete this and all being well, we’re confident we can break the world record too.”

This is the second time the team has taken on a charity cycling challenge. In 2012, they cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats in 50 hours.

To read more or support the team’s efforts with a donation, visit their Virgin Money Giving Page.