Reading Buses cancels 2020 open day

Reading Buses’ 2020 open day is the latest casualty of the coronavirus pandemic. The company is also extending its charity partnership with Sport in Mind for a second year to help make up for the loss of fundraising opportunities this year.

The company says it had no other option than to cancel the fundraising open day, which was scheduled for 28 June.  “As the current restriction on movement and ban on mass gatherings continues, we have been having discussions about our charity partnership and our open day,” says chief executive officer Robert Williams.

“We decided that, unfortunately, we have no option than to cancel the open day this year. First and foremost is the safety of our employees and customers – even if the current situation is resolved by the end of June, we wouldn’t feel comfortable holding a mass gathering so close to such tragic events. Postponing the event until later in the year would also present further challenges which would then be difficult to overcome.

“Secondly, organising the open day is a huge undertaking, and with many of our employees in furlough there simply isn’t enough time or the resources to do the event justice – especially if we kept to the original date.

“As Sport in Mind has already lost a couple of months of ‘proper’ fundraising time and with the cancellation of the open day meaning the single biggest fundraising event will not happen, we thought it only fair that we extend our partnership with the charity until December 2021.”

He adds: “We are hopeful that the newly extended partnership will allow all our customers and employees to get behind the charity and help to raise even more money for this very worthy cause.”

Neil Harris, founder of Sport in Mind, says: “Everyone connected to the charity was excited about working closely with Reading Buses on the open day and various events over the spring and summer, but due to the current challenges we all face it was feared we may be deprived of this opportunity. Sport in Mind is thrilled to learn that we’ll be able to continue to work with Reading Buses throughout 2021 and will look to run the best, most fun open day ever.”

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