2021 Chairman’s Report for Joey Dunlop Foundation

Sun, 10 Jan 2021

This year’s Chairman’s report is unlike any other as 2020 turned out to be completely different for everyone across the globe. I do hope that all of the Foundations supporters have managed to stay safe and avoid the dreadful COVID-19 virus. Early in 2020 our very own Trustee, John Watterson, did contract the virus and I’m relieved to say he managed to make a good, swift recovery and did not require any medical hospital treatment. If any of our supporters have picked up the virus, I truly hope you manged to fight it off and make a quick recovery.

As the world went into lockdown, the Foundation had only managed to sell around a hundred of our annual Tombola tickets, (for the Honda CBR500RR in Joey’s Bar racing colours) so an early decision was taken to cancel the draw for 2020 and roll the prize over to 2021. Refunds were offered but I’m please to say that those who had purchased tickets are happy to carry them over for 2021 – the new draw date and tickets will be made available soon so please keep an eye on our website and Facebook page for further details on this.

Usually I would publish this report after the Foundations annual dinner held in January each year, however, as the island’s borders remain closed preventing the Charity’s Patron Linda Dunlop, Vice President John Harris and UK representative Barry Steels from attending, the committee decided that a Night at the Race’s fundraiser would be held for those on the island. Disappointingly, this event has now been cancelled due to a second lockdown on the island. Many of our local road racers had accepted our invitation and we also managed to get Roy Moore to dust of his boards for one more time! The committee is now looking at organising another fundraising event in what would have been during TT 2021, further details will be announced later in the year. We hope that the islands borders will be open by then.

Braddan Bridge House

In March 2020 a second overhead hoist was installed in one of the larger apartments on the first floor with the assistance of Medical Equipment Maintenance Services (MEMS) and A & J Builders and Contractors. New height adjustable profiling beds, air mattresses and a shower chair were also purchased to replace old equipment.

It was very quiet over the summer months as all of the holiday bookings had to be cancelled. JDF were able to assist one family who were moving back to the island; only planning to stay with us for 3 weeks whilst their home was adapted to cater for their disabled son, however as work had stopped due to lockdown rules they stayed at BBH for around 3 months! Work was carried out on the grounds during lockdown with Spencer Baker (aged 14) putting in a lot of hard graft and the committee thank him for his efforts. Local companies also showed their continued support; HSS for the loan of their equipment and A.V Craine & Sons Ltd for the hardcore.

Isle of Man Government Department for Enterprise supported many businesses in the Tourist & Accommodation sectors with their Strategic Capacity Scheme. This grant has assisted greatly in keeping the industry going through these tough times. Once the islands border restrictions eased, the Foundation opened up the apartments for local residents, students and key workers to use. Gilly Keown (General Manager & committee member) has been kept busy with booking enquiries, ensuring that the facility was COVID-19 compliant and has also has taken on cleaning duties as well as keeping on top of the charities book keeping and other admin roles.

JDF received many donations throughout 2020 with two in particular, being very generous amounts bequeathed to JDF by the late Mr John Platt and Mr Wilson Gibb. The Foundation greatly appreciate all donations but more so in 2020 as there were so many major events cancelled, severely impacting on the JDF’s fundraising efforts. The list is too great to state here and there is always the fear of omitting ones from the extensive list!

Many of you will know of JDF’s hardworking committee member Charlie Bond. Charlie has for many years been on hand to setup the distinctive JDF pop-up marquee stall, often starting early morning and packing away late evening. Charlie has recently recovered from a serious stroke and is recovering at home but will take some time yet before he can get back to normal duties. Hopefully we will all be back in action in the spring and look forward to seeing all our supporters again.

Thank you for your continued support and we hope to see you during our fundraising events throughout 2021.

Bruce Baker

Chairman: Joey Dunlop Foundation