All-year-round celebrations at Smith Brothers HQ
It’s officially the start of the festive season. But at Smith Brothers HQ, we don’t believe that out of the office fun should just be reserved for the annual Christmas ‘do. In between some of the exciting projects are working on, we made sure every member of the Smith Brothers team was given the opportunity to have a bit of fun outside of our Elland HQ this summer, by organising a range of activity days to offer something for everyone.
Two groups of nine adrenaline junkies headed to Yorkshire Outdoors in Thirsk for a day of clay pigeon shooting, 4x4 driving and quad biking. 13 of the office problem-solvers put their skills to the test as they tackled The Crystal Maze live experience, while another bunch pulled on their glad rags for a day at the races.
By far the most popular though, were our three fishing trips. We originally planned two, but due to high demand – we added a third. Here’s what the team got up to during some of their days out.
The second of the three fishing trips called for an early start for all five fishermen courtesy of a two-hour drive to the lake where they would be trying their hand at fly fishing. Although there was plenty of pre-game chat about the best casting technique, all the strategising went out of the window when the team set up camp at the lake.
Andy Radford was the first to get a bite, but the fish had disappeared by the time he reeled in the line. It was then Craig Collinson’s turn to lose out – the fish was hooked but the line snapped. By this time, the team had been there for two hours, and most of them hadn’t even had a bite.
After a quick refreshment break, our luck changed, as Craig perfected the casting technique, which allowed him to position the fly right over the trout. One slight move of the wrist and the fish was hooked! A couple more casts by all and it was time to pack up.
While the most fish the team saw that day was in the chippy in Whitby, it wasn’t a complete wash-out as Craig mastered his casting technique and landed the only catch of the day.
A day at the races
With our fantastic summer weather still treating us well, a seven-strong group headed for a day at the races in October. Proceedings began with lunch at the Grand St Ledger Hotel before the gang headed into the racecourse – and the Premier Suite – just in time for the first race of the day.
Although some of the team were novices when it came to betting, they soon got into the swing of things. Everyone had a little flutter, with some rounding the day out having made a profit – that’s what we like to see!
Lee Newheiser collected the most in a single race with winnings of £86.00. Glenda Zottola was a close second, taking home £73.00 – impressive, given her strategy was to pick the jockeys with the pink vests.
The Crystal Maze
The final outing for the year saw two teams head to the Crystal Maze in Manchester for an afternoon of puzzle-solving and physical challenges.
After fuelling up with some pre-competition food and drink in the city centre, the squad headed to the venue. They split into two groups so they could compete in different areas of the maze at the same time before taking on the legendary crystal dome.
Both teams went up against the dome’s famous fans, eager to secure more golden tickets than their rivals. In the end though, it was team two who pipped the others to the post, with eight crystals and 224 golden tickets.
Anesco Golf Day
Finally, a couple of the Smith Brothers family headed to a charity golf day hosted by our friends at Anesco during the summer. Although the team is keeping quiet about who was the best golfer, commercial director Dave Ogden donated a Frank Bruno belt to the auction, which fetched £1,000 for charity.