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Wales Rally GB14 good causes– Welsh communities benefit from world class sporting event
– Fund raising on Wales Rally GB generates more than £45,000
– Volunteer car park operators rewarded at symbolic Glan Llyn Inn

Christmas came early for some of the local charities and good causes that benefited directly from last month’s Wales Rally GB (13-16 November).

In total, volunteers who organised the spectator car parks during the event raised more than £41,000 for clubs, schools and other groups based in both mid and north Wales. A further £4,450 was generated for the Richard Burns Foundation and Wales Air Ambulance, largely by the public’s generous donations made during the rally.

Yesterday evening (Thursday), four of the voluntary groups were presented with cheques totalling in excess of £12,000 by Ben Taylor, Managing Director of Wales Rally GB during a special evening at the Glan Llyn Inn in Clawddnewydd near Ruthin.

It was a highly appropriate and symbolic venue as the funds raised by the local community association – Antur Cae Cymro – in the Clocaenog forest car parks in the past two years have made a significant contribution towards saving the village’s 100-year old pub.

“Last year, the community had ten weeks to raise £90,000 to buy this pub,” said Dylan Jones from Antur Cae Cymro. “The rally came along at just the right time and made a big difference to us. The group now has a community hall, thriving pub and a local shop which serve the three local villages. We look forward to the rally each year and hope to be helping out again in 2015.”

The other fund-raisers collecting cheques were The Rotary Club of Ruthin, Clybiau Ffermwyr Ifranc Meirionnydd (Young Farmers Club in Gwynedd) and Ysgol Cerrigydrudion, a predominantly Welsh speaking Primary school in the region. All three will be putting the significant funds raised during Wales Rally GB to great causes.

“The work that we do is very important in a rural community like this,” said Eleri Roberts, County Organiser for the Clwyd Young Farmers Club. “We get little in the way of funding, so we have to generate our own income from other sources and events like Wales Rally GB are great opportunities for us to raise money.”

“When the rally comes to town, it’s an event that the entire community can get behind,” confirmed Trefor Rowlands, Treasurer for Ruthin Rotary Club. “The impact of it is felt across the whole area, not just in the shops and hotels, but also in longer-term benefits. The money we raised will install a defibrillator in Ruthin town centre for the use of the town in an emergency situation.”

“This was a completely new experience for us, but a very enjoyable and productive one,” confirmed Eirlys Edwards, Headteacher at Ysgol Cerrigdrudion. “The money we have raised will go towards buying iPads and other IT equipment that will be a great benefit to the children in their learning and that wouldn’t have been possible without the rally.”

“It makes us incredibly proud to see what a positive impact Wales Rally GB has on the communities in which it takes place,” said Taylor. “Inevitably we tend to focus on the £10.8m of economic benefit that the rally brings to the Welsh economy, but it is so much more powerful when you see first-hand that the money raised by these local groups is making a real difference to everyday lives in the region.”

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