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Video Produced by Hedleys Karten Media

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What a night to remember! After the last couple of years, we could not wait to open the doors again to a night of glitz and glamour.

Guests were invited to a ‘Roaring 20s Prohibition Party’ at The Hilton Newcastle Gateshead, enjoying a sparkling drinks reception provided by Hellens Group, followed by an amazing five-course meal and fantastic entertainment throughout the night.

Vital funds were raised through our silent auction, sponsored by Lenore Specialist Care Limited, including prizes like signed football boots, glamping trips, and pizza & fizz! With your help, we raised a staggering £80,267.

“with your help, we raised a staggering £80,267″

For 15 years The Percy Hedley Ball has been one of the region’s most popular and enduring charity balls, attracting over 300 guests each year.  Since it began the ball has raised just under £1million to support disabled children, young people, and adults across the North East.

This all helps children like Nat. Nat is 10 years old and has attended our Percy Hedley School, in Newcastle, since he was a toddler. Sally and Neil, Nat’s parents, kindly agreed to share their story with guests at the ball, and to tell us what The Percy Hedley Foundation means to them.

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We’d like to give special thanks to our main sponsor of the night, Tolent Construction. The event was beautifully set up to transport you back to the 1920’s by Big Purple Events, while Watson Family Charitable Trust sponsored the amazing entertainment which was provided by North East band Hip Operation, followed by midnight snacks which were sponsored by Nixon Hire. And of course, a huge thank you to the ball committee and our many volunteers for their support on the night.

Take a look at our photo gallery, taken by none other than The Bigger Picture Agency. Don’t forget to tag us in your photos from the night!


Percy Hedley Foundation Appoint New Chief Executive

We’re delighted to announce John Knight has been appointed as our new Chief Executive.  John joins us with more than three decades of experience in the charity sector. 

John first moved to the North East to study Sport at Newcastle Polytechnic between 1983 and 1986. As a student he started volunteering for a local children’s charity and has remained within the voluntary sector ever since. John’s career to date has seen him leading several charities in the North East, the Isle of Man and most recently in Leicester where he has been CEO of LOROS Hospice for close to 7 years. 

The majority of John’s previous roles have been in organisations committed to helping children, young people and families. With now over 20 years’ experience as a Chief Executive, a love of the North East and a dedication to supporting children and families, John is looking forward to joining The Percy Hedley Foundation. 

“It is a tremendous privilege to have been chosen for this role. I’m really excited to be joining the fantastic team at the Percy Hedley Foundation.” said John.

Outside of work John is a keen sailor, cyclist and trail runner. He is married to Angela with 3 grown up children one of whom is at Newcastle University.  

David Arthur, Vice Chair of The Percy Hedley Foundation said “We’re excited to welcome John’s energy and enthusiasm to the Foundation.  His wealth of experience in the third sector, particularly in organisations that help children, young people and families, meant he was an exceptional choice, from a list of high-calibre candidates. 

John will follow our interim CEO D’Arcy Myers, joining us in March 2022. 

Therapy Vacancies at The Percy Hedley Foundation

Are you looking for a therapy job after graduating, or for that career refresh? The Percy Hedley Foundation has vacancies in therapy roles. We offer a competitive salary and benefits package and a friendly and supportive working environment.

Percy Hedley School Vacancies:

Percy Hedley School provides all age (3-18) day and residential special education for children who have complex special educational needs including cerebral palsy, PMLD and those with communication difficulties and autistic spectrum disorder. The physiotherapy department works collaboratively with teaching, nursing, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy colleagues to meet the needs of the pupils in a holistic and integrated way.

Physiotherapist (Band 5 or 6)

We require a qualified and HPC registered physiotherapist to provide input to a caseload of students with complex physical, communication and learning difficulties.

Click to Apply

Speech and Language Therapist (Band 5 or 6, Term Time Only)

We require a qualified and HPC registered Speech and Language Therapist Band 5 or Band 6) to provide input to a caseload of pupils with complex speech, language and communication needs.

Click to Apply

Hedley’s Horizons Vacancies:

Hedley’s Horizons offers a busy, vibrant and varied environment that supports disabled adults with cerebral palsy, communication and sensory impairments and complex learning needs including those with Autism Spectrum Conditions. We offer a choice of activities that meet peoples’ aspirations, needs and preferences, thus offering a very individual programme with support from a highly skilled and dedicated staff team.

Speech and Language Therapist (Band 5 or 6)

We have two exciting opportunities for a Band 5 and a Band 6 Speech and Language Therapist within the Therapy team working in Hedley’s Horizons to provide input to a caseload of people with complex speech, language and communication and dysphagia needs.

Click to Apply

Physiotherapist (Band 7)

We are looking for an enthusiastic and adaptable Physiotherapist to join our team. You would become part of an existing, dedicated team of therapists who strive to deliver best practice at all times

Click to Apply

If you think any of these roles are perfect for you, we’d love to hear from you. Check out our fantastic staff benefits here:



Northern Counties School – Remembrance Day

Pupils at Northern Counties School have been learning about Remembrance Day this week and thinking of ways they can remember the fallen. The Deaf Department got together Thursday morning and have been making a poppy wreath to show their respects.

Hillcrest pupils have also been busy this week. Jen’s class created some beautiful poppy prints, using hands and poppies. They also used their Forest School lesson to learn how to make poppies inspired by nature.

Annmarie’s class have made their own poppy window display.

Percy Hedley School donates over £1000 to The Dog and Cat Shelter

Last summer students from Percy Hedley School decided that they wanted to do some fundraising as part of a class project.  After some discussion, they agreed on The Dog and Cat shelter as a worthy cause and so they got in touch to ask how they could support them.

The class came up with the idea of a sponsored dog walk over the course of a week, to try and walk 5 miles each by the end of the week!


They had hoped to raise around £150-£200 so when the final figure was over £1000 they were thrilled! People were so generous with their donations and the Dog and Cat shelter were delighted too!

Love Island Party at Leybourne

When Kara asked for a Love Island themed 18th birthday party, the staff at Leybourne really did go above and beyond to deliver.

Staff pulled out all the stops including decorating Leybourne to look as if you were stepping right into the villa, with music and games, and some staff even wore bikini’s over their clothes so they would look the part!

Kara had a fantastic day with all of her friends, and it really shows in the videos of residents and staff singing along! What an amazing day!

Northern Counties School 2021 NASS Outstanding Impact Award – Nomination

The Percy Hedley Foundation are delighted to announce that Northern Counties School has been shortlisted for the prestigious National Association of Independent Schools & Non-Maintained Special Schools (NASS) Awards.

The school has been shortlisted for the 2021 NASS Award for Outstanding Impact in recognition of the work that Northern Counties are doing around Positive Behaviour Support, which leads to improved quality of life outcomes for our young people. 

Northern Counties School, based in Jesmond, is a school that sets out to make a difference to the learning, wellbeing and future life chances of over 100 children and young people with significant additional needs. 

Teachers, therapists and special support assistants work together in trans-disciplinary teams to meet the individual needs of every pupil and help them succeed. 

This Outstanding Impact award focuses on the work that has profoundly impacted the outcomes for children and young people. It recognises a continued excellence over an extended period of time, while delivering innovation, imagination, and outstanding good practice. 

Jo Allen, Head Teacher of Northern Counties School commented: 

“I must say I am absolutely thrilled that we, at Northern Counties School, have been shortlisted for the 2021 NASS Outstanding Impact Award. I am so proud of the whole staff team here, they are deeply committed to all the children and young people, always going above and beyond to ensure all our pupils achieve the best possible outcomes. This award nominate really is a fantastic recognition of everyone single member of staff’s hard work and dedication.” 

D’Arcy Myers, The Percy Hedley Foundation Interim CEO added: 

“The nomination for this award is just another example of our schools being recognised for the brilliant work the staff do every day, in what has been an extremely challenging period within education. Best of luck at the awards and hopefully they can bring back the trophy to the North East.”  

The winners will be announced at the 2021 NASS Annual Conference being held on the 12 & 13 October at The Principal Hotel, York.