News – Forth Sector

New Laundry Equipment Arrives for St Jude’s Laundry

The ‘weather bomb’ brought the wettest, sleatiest, coldest weather ever to Duddingston Yards last week but we were delighted to welcome our new laundry equipment as it arrived for installation. Having been on a long road trip all the way from the Girbau factory near Barcelona, our beautiful machinery finally arrived at its new home – four lorry loads of it! The equipment is a very visible sign of the investment into St Jude’s Laundry that will increase capacity and provide a modern, state of the art Laundry with great working conditions for our staff. St Jude’s will move in the New Year from the site it has occupied for nearly 40 years, to our employability hub at Duddingston Yards. Check out our blog for regular updates of the move:

 Calendar arriving


Forth Sector celebrates its first year at Duddingston Yards

Staff at Forth Sector looked at each other with disbelief when it was announced that we had been here at Duddingston Yards for a year.  Time passes disturbingly quickly.  However, it is indeed 1 year since we officially opened the doors at Duddingston Yards, and continued our hard work in helping people back to work.  We have expanded our embroidery service by aquiring Thompsons of Edinburgh – and have had a very busy summer printing and embroidering school uniforms for the new term.  We sold the Scottish Soapworks, and are in the middle of co-ordinating the move of St Jude’s from Loaning Road to our brand new unit here at “Duddy Yards FSHQ”.

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Callum donates £550 to Forth Sector.

FS cheque news

Cheque presentation

Callum Cleasby undertook a sponsored walk to raise the money for Forth Sector as part of his Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award. Callum, who attends Stewart Melville College, and his dad, completed The Lyke Wake Walk in Northumbria, a 40 mile walk across the gruelling North York Moors.  They completed the walk in 16 hours

Callum presented the cheque to Susan McLaughlin, Director of Employability Services, at Forth Sector on 31st July.

Forth Sector thanked Callum for his generosity and will use the money to award a grant to a “Spark@theyards” participant.  The project, which is entering its second year, provides young people of school age training and employability skills to equip them for the world of work.  The money will be awarded as a prize for the most successful candidates of the project, and will go towards equipment or clothing relevant to the work placements.

Spark @ the yards is a jointly run project with Forth Sector and Barnardo’s and is funded by the J.P. Morgan Chase Foundation.

The Lyke Wake Walk is a forty-mile crossing of the North York Moors from Osmotherley to Ravenscar essentially following the line of the watershed across the moors at its widest point. The late Bill Cowley originated the concept of the walk with an open challenge in the Dalesman in August 1955 to cross the moors on foot from West to East within 24 hours. At noon on 1st October that year, eleven men and three women set out to perform a crossing reaching Ravenscar around 10.30 the next day. The Lyke Wake Club was born (derived from ‘Wake’ – watching over a corpse, ‘Lyke’ – the corpse itself).

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Mike Finlayson CEO of Forth Sector contributes to new book “Public and Third Sector Leadership” Book Launched on 8th August!


Forth Sector achieves EFQM award.


Private, public and third-sector organisations, which in the past year have demonstrated a profound ability to pursue an ‘excellence’ agenda. That is, the ones that constantly strive to make improvements and ‘operational’ changes to their working practices to shape their organisation for the better and whose “mantra” is a never-ending quest to deliver continuous improvement and pursue excellence, have won an EFQM  1 star award. The awards pay homage to organisations that have vision – progressive in every sense of the word, with aspirations to inspire, nurture and motivate through external assessment, thereby enhancing performance across the business. Committed to Excellence (C2E), based on the European Foundation for Quality Management(EFQM) Excellence Model helps businesses and organisations deliver results through a series of improvement projects. One prime example is Forth Sector, a social enterprise supporting people with disabilities into employment. Following a £3 million investment, the organisation has relocated and has been re-engineered to meet the considerable challenges it faces. During the change process it recognised that building quality into the business model was essential. Achieving C2E has enabled Forth Sector to better understand challenges and develop intelligent, considered responses in terms of management and processes and to recognise the impact its activities have on people, its community and the environment. Chief executive Mike Finlayson said it was not a “tick box” exercise but had been a practical tool to effect demonstrable changes in behaviour and thinking. He recommends the process to other third-sector organisations and suggests it may well prove critical to a group’s survival in these challenging times.

News from the Forth Sector Group



Dingo and Arlene presenting an award to one of the successful candidates.

Forth Sector hosted the awards event for the J.P.Morgans funded youth employability project. The event was attended representatives from J.P.Morgan, Barnardos, Forth Sector Employability Services, Radio Forth One dj’s Dingo and Arlene, and Unity Trust Bank, who donated a prize of £500 for the candidate who had shown the greatest development in their new role.  Families and friends came to see the “Class of 2014” –  presented certificates and awards by Dingo and Arlene from Radio Forth One for their success in gaining positions of training and employment. Candidates had gained training and apprenticeship positions as a mechanic, and work as trainee hair dressers.  The Project is based at Forth Sector at Duddingston Yards.  For more information contact us on 0131 201 2450 and ask for Spark @ the Yards.

Room Hire Available

Forth Sectors latest news… introduces you to clean, functional meeting space with access to an IT suite, conference space, board room and meeting rooms.  Catering available from the Hub Cafe on site.  Relaxing cafe space, free WiFi and on site parking. Classroom_2 Please see catalogue here, or browse e-catalogue Meeting Facilities PDF Download

Forth Sector | Registered in Scotland as a Scottish Charity No: SCO16414, registered office Duddingston Yards, Edinburgh EH15 3NT

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