Frontline Hero (Individual Award) 2021


Lucy MacNeill, a true community hero and inspiration within the FM industry

Frontline Hero (Individual Award) 2021

“The humanity and care that Lucy shows not only benefits her local community but empowers our staff to create social value in the places where they live and work” – Sarah Bamford, communications and marketing manager, Eric Wright FM

 Lucy MacNeill is a business analyst with the Eric Wright FM Digital Data Team. She is noted across the business for her dedication to supporting residents and community groups in her local area – the Wyre district of Lancashire.

Eric Wright FM is wholly owned by a charitable trust, and MacNeill inspires the workforce and is noted by colleagues as a trailblazer for social value.

The Wyre district is in the 20 per cent of most deprived, lower-tier local authority areas in England. Between 2015 and 2019, the district has become more deprived in six out of seven domains: income, employment, education, skills and training, health and disability, barriers to housing services, and living environment, according to Lancashire County Council.

Results gleaned

As a resident, MacNeill spends more than 200 hours of her own time each month supporting the community in Wyre.

She is a trustee of the Westview Community Association based in Fleetwood. The association offers a range of facilities accessible to local people and she is responsible for creating initiatives to support health, education, and personal development.

She coordinates community initiatives and applications for grant funding which have made a big difference to the quality of services on offer. MacNeill’s recent efforts include:

  • applying for and securing a £5,000 Community Grant from the Eric Wright Charitable Trust to cover running costs of the association for a year;
  • working with local authorities to provide extra support for residents and has secured substantial funding for food support in the Wyre area;
  • stocking food banks and engaging with young people to volunteer in the food bank, instead of hanging around the street corners; and
  • providing support for people in emergency accommodation;
  • supporting the association to run Duke of Edinburgh Award events to help local young people to gain new skills and explore new territories.

In October 2020, MacNeill won the High Sheriff of Lancashire Award for services to the community.

Best practice learning point

The company says her public-spiritedness filters through into her role as a business analyst. She has led the creation of many community-focused employee apps, enabling staff to take part in community events, volunteer for various ambassador roles and to generally become more involved in company social value initiatives.

She is known as the ‘go-to’ across the company for support with community projects, and made a presentation at this year’s National Social Value Conference, sharing her work and best practice on how to empower staff to drive social value.

Key takeaways

  • Works with local authorities to provide support, including food banks for residents in the Wyre area
  • Has led the creation of many community-focused employee apps to enable Eric Wright FM staff to take part in community events
  • Supports the Westview Community Association in Fleetwood to run Duke of Edinburgh Award events
  • Presented her initiatives in a session sponsored by Eric Wright FM at this year’s National Social Value Conference –- ‘Engage and empower your workforce to further drive social value”