AS Cummins nears the end of its 100th anniversary, PETER BARRON explains why the company is so proud to be the headline sponsor of the 20thLocal Heroes Awards, staged this week by The Northern Echo

CUMMINS is a global power leader, supplying engines all over the world.

But its employees – including the hundreds who work in Darlington – are also proud of the importance the company places on supporting local communities.

For example, for the past two years, the engine manufacturer has been the main sponsor of the Local Heroes Awards, staged by The Northern Echo, and known as the “Oscars of grass roots sport”.

The 20th anniversary of this inspirational event takes place in the Grand Marquee, at Wynyard Hall, on Thursday evening, and one of Britain’s greatest ever athletes, Steve Cram, will again be amongst the VIPs honouring the stars of amateur sport.

The Northern Echo:

Cummins’ Marketing and Communications Director Steve Nendick says: “Our company is celebrating a really special milestone in 2019 – 100 years of achieving goals, with individual excellence, allied with world-class teamwork, at the heart of our sustained success.

“Another big part of Cummins’ ethos is to invest in local communities, so it seemed fitting that we should support another important milestone – the 20th anniversary of the Local Heroes Awards.”

The Local Heroes Awards slogan for two decades has been “Ordinary People, Extraordinary Achievements”. It is all about aiming high, refusing to accept defeat, and defying the odds to make things happen.

That mirrors everything Cummins has stood for since it was launched by visionary entrepreneur Clessie Cummins in America in 1919. That’s why the company chose “Challenging The Impossible” as its slogan for its centenary year.

Over the years, the Local Heroes Awards has produced a stream of examples of people who have challenged the impossible: those who have overcome disabilities to become great champions; others who have refused to accept that age is a barrier to achievement; and some who have pushed themselves to the limit of human endurance.

Every Cummins employee is given four hours a year to devote to a specific local cause, and many go way beyond that in the contributions they make to the community.

Therefore, the company also wants to salute the Local Heroes finalists who dedicate themselves to ensuring that others benefit from the joys of playing sport.

Mr Nendick said: “As Cummins marks 100 years, and Local Heroes reaches 20 years, it feels like a natural partnership. We look forward to presenting the final award of the night – the overall Local Hero of the past 20 years.

“Good luck to all the finalists, congratulations to the winners, and here’s to another memorable night.”

The Northern Echo: