Lay-bour of love: local builders donate and fit carpet for community use

A Sandwell Council supplier has gone the extra mile by donating and laying a carpet for a social enterprise in Princes End, Tipton.

Based in Tyseley, Birmingham, Tyrer Building Contractors carries out private work as well as extensions and refurbishments for local authority-let properties.

As a Sandwell Council supplier, Tyrer strives to add ‘social value’ to the work it carries out in Sandwell. This means going beyond the basic scope of the contract to bring extra benefits for people and local communities – by creating work experience opportunities, for example, or offering schools engagement.

Knowing Tyrer’s commitment to giving back, Sandwell Council’s social value officer Karen Richards was keen to match the team with a community organisation in need. So she introduced the builders to Life in Community CIC in Princes End, Tipton – for whom they donated and fitted a carpet, footing the bill for all materials and labour.

Life in Community CIC, Princes End

The worn and dirty carpet at St John's in Princes End, before Tyrer Building Contractors donated and fitted a new one
Before: the worn carpet at St John’s Church Hall in Princes End

Life in Community CIC is a social enterprise based in St John’s Church Hall in Princes End. It supports people in Tipton with learning and access to education, social and emotional wellbeing, and financial independence. So, as founder and director of programmes Kelly Cranston explained, the carpet will be appreciated by many people.

“Life in Community at St John’s is developing a community hub, which will enable us to create a safe and welcoming place for residents living in Princes End. Residents have asked us to develop a parent and toddlers’ group, a fathers’ group and to support local people to launch a SEN [special educational needs] group,” she said.

Builder in high visibility jacket fitting the new carpet
Carpet fitting underway

“However, we needed new carpet due to the old carpet being stained and worn. Tyrer Building has overwhelmed us with their support of a wonderful donation of carpet and all the labour involved in its fitting. This has made such a fantastic transformation in the church hall, where we deliver our activities.

“We are so grateful for the work that was completed by ‘The A Team’ – Geoff, Tom and the team (Richard, Ryan, Ray and Steve). We will be forever grateful”.

Kelly said St John’s Church Council also hugely appreciated the work and would be writing to the builders to extend their thanks.

‘An easy decision to get involved’

Geoff Tyrer said his team was only too happy to help the Princes End organisation.

“We at Tyrer Building Contractors are fully committed to engage with Think Sandwell to provide and improve facilities for the enjoyment of local residents. Seeing the poor condition of the carpets the Mother and Toddler Group used at St John’s Church Hall made it an easy decision for us to get involved and provide new carpets, knowing it would make such a big difference for all the centre users.

“The feedback I had from the guys was that they thoroughly enjoyed the project knowing the difference it would make to so many local residents for years to come”.

About social value at Sandwell Council

After: the new fitted carpet courtesy of Tyrer
After: Tyrer Building Contractors fitted the new carpet at Princes End

Here on the Think Sandwell team, Karen Richards ensures there is a pathway for all contractors to give back to the community. Karen engages with the community sector across Sandwell’s six towns – often through SCVO. She works hard to match contractors with community or faith groups who can benefit from their support.

“It always feels like a great success when community engagements such as this one between Tyrer Building Contractors and Life in Community CIC creates so much pleasure for both parties – an additional social value bonus,” said Karen. “Just small changes can have lasting outcomes”.

Thank you to Tyrer Building Contractors for doing a lovely thing for people in Tipton. And thank you to Life in Community CIC for giving so much to the Princes End community.

If your Sandwell company is looking for ideas to add social value (a close relation of corporate social responsibility), contact Karen via If you have a good news story to share, contact us here at Think Sandwell.

Tyrer Building Contractors get their certificate from Kelly Cranston
Kelly Cranston [second from left] presents Tyrer Building Contractors with a certificate of thanks