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Respresentatives of the Castlegate and Wellington Square shopping center receiving and celebrating their award at the ceremony in London. Credit: Sceptre Awards.

Castlegate and Wellington Square shopping centers win Sceptre Award

The Sceptre Award for Community Initiative of the Year is in recognition of the Stockton-on-Tees (city in North-East England) centers community literacy project, Stockton Stories that launched in April 2021.

Castlegate and Wellington Square were one of seven community initiatives shortlisted for the award for which the ceremony was held in London’s Royal Lancaster Hotel. The competition was from varying community campaigns across shopping centers in the United Kingdom.

‘Stockton Stories’ had two main purposes, the first to raise money for reading charity Bookmark to help children in Teesside with their reading skills; and the second, to create a record of what the coronavirus pandemic has been like for children in the Teesside community.

Matt Boxall, Center Manager at the two shopping centers says: “We are delighted that our Stockton Stories initiative has been recognized by the industry with this award for excellence. The local community is always at the forefront of what we do and this was no exception.”

Chantal Taylor, Marketing Manager for both schemes said: “We would not have raised over £400 for Bookmark literacy charity if it had not been for the generosity of the local community. Our local community makes us very proud indeed, so we were exceptionally pleased to have won this prestigious award.”   

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council purchased the Castlegate and Wellington Square shopping centers in 2019 as part of its plans to transform the Borough’s six town centers to ensure they are fit for the future.

Nigel Cooke, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Housing, said: “Stockton Stories is a brilliant example of how a town can work together to support each other through shared experiences, as well as raising hundreds of pounds for a very worthy cause.”