On Saturday May 17 Mustard Tree celebrated what will surely be one of the most defining moments in its 20-year history.
We have become official owners of 110 Oldham Road, our warehouse facility headquarters in Ancoats. For nine years we had rented the premises, until recently, when the building’s owner, Anthony Preston, made the immensely charitable gesture of donating it to us.
It is an act of great generosity that will have a hugely positive impact on the lives of the homeless and marginalised that Mustard Tree helps every day. It means we now have long-term security and can really look to invest in the building for the future. To mark the occasion, we invited people to take a tour of the building and meet our staff and volunteers, as well as providing a buffet prepared by one of our ex clients. The event was attended by around 200 people, from volunteers past and present, clients, supporters, and corporate supporters.
Anthony Preston himself made an appearance and was met with a standing ovation, seemingly taken aback by the outpouring of feeling from Mustard Tree supporters. As a token of thanks, we presented him with a scrapbook that included quotes from staff, volunteers and supporters about how his gift of the building made them feel. Mustard Tree will be keeping hold of the scrapbook for a few weeks in order to include even more positive feedback, so if you have any comments you would like the Preston family to read, please do email firstname.lastname@example.org
Overall, the atmosphere was fantastic, the food was delicious and emotions were high, reflecting the fact that this is truly a game changer for Mustard Tree. Graham Hudson, our Creative Programmes Manager, summed up what the ownership means for the charity: “For me, the overriding theme of the open day event was one of “transformation”. Transformation from a personal perspective, transformation in the sense of our sustainability now that we own the building, the proposed transformation of the building itself and the most important aspect, the continued transformation of individual lives, families and communities throughout Greater Manchester.”
Mustard Tree CEO Adrian Nottingham said of the new ownership: “Due to the remarkable generosity of the Preston Family our main Manchester facilities are now secure, and with the continued help, support and favour of our many friends and partners, we are here for the long haul. The need for Mustard Tree is greater today than it ever has been. This donation is an absolute game changer for us and has come just at the right time. We are already planning how we will complete a necessary refurb and best utilise this incredible asset for the future.”