Colleagues rally round to help Melbourn workmate get her life back together after fire

PUBLISHED: 09:59 01 December 2015 | UPDATED: 11:54 01 December 2015

Nicki is described as a strong woman and great mother by friends.

Nicki is described as a strong woman and great mother by friends.


After a fire destroyed a colleague’s house and killed four of her pets, the manager at Wyevale Garden Centre decided to step in to help her get her life back on track.

Melbourn mum of two Nicki Montgomery found out a blaze had ripped through her home while she was at work, and seeing how concerned she was, manager Leo Copping made contact with the regional operations manager Stefan Swiatyj and the HR department to see what support the business could offer.

Leo said: “We hope to present the funds to Nicki before Christmas with a view to being able to see her start to replace the things she has lost over the coming months.”

The colleagues at Wyevale started a collection straight away with workers from the restaurant, shop, plant area and concession shops all putting in and wishing Nicki all the best.

Wyevale responded by providing the requested time off and support not only for Nicki but also for any colleague affected by the incident – they also provided some emergency funding for immediate help over the first couple of days.

A fundraising page was also set up as an opportunity for the 5,000 colleagues across the business to offer support.

The information of the fundraising page was shared across the centre, nursery, field based and head office teams across the UK with a target of £1,000.

Leo added: “This was passed very early on and to date we have raised £1,798 with additional pledges still to be added of more than £300.

“We hope to present the funds to Nicki before Christmas with a view to being able to see Nicki start to replace the things she has lost over the coming months.”

If you would like to add to the funds being raised there is still time, just click here and pledge as little or as much as you like – you can also pop into the centre and they will add any donation for you.

Craft shop owner Laura Whitford is also fundraising for Nicki and has set up a collection bucket in her Melbourn Street Shop No.3.

She said: “When I read about what happened to Nicki and her family I was horrified.

“As a mum and animal-lover I can’t imagine what they must be going through.”


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