Oil giant Essar gives £3,000 to local youth charity

Essar Oil (UK), which operates the huge refinery at Stanlow, has donated £3,000 to the Boaty Theatre Company in Ellesmere Port after reaching a safety milestone

Laura Harris
Laura Harris, artistic director for the Boaty Theatre Company


Oil giant Essar Oil (UK) has donated £3,000 to a charity in Ellesmere Port that organises on-going projects, performances, workshops and creative activities for young people in the area.

Essar, which operates a large refinery at nearby Stanlow, raised the cash for the Boaty Theatre Company through its Let’s Give scheme, which links the company’s commitment to safety directly with charitable giving.

The business reached the milestone of one million hours without a recordable injury at the refinery, triggering the donation to the charity, which provides a safe and a supportive environment for local young people of all abilities to achieve their creative ambitions.

Boaty Theatre was quick to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic, moving rehearsals online and social groups going virtual to ensure all their regular beneficiaries were safe and well during isolation.

In response to challenges facing the local community, the team devised and launched a free summer programme, which local young people could join in person or online. Comprising four hours of creative workshops every weekday throughout the holidays, the programme includes drama sessions, creative writing and music production, together with yoga, mindfulness and art therapy.

The team also created activity packs required to join in workshops from home. These were given to over 400 local children, helping families struggling with the cost of home schooling. The charity has also been able to provide in excess of 30 free lunches every day through external support.

Artistic director for the Boaty Theatre Company and summer programme lead, Laura Harris, said: “We were delighted to discover that Essar knew of and wished to support our work.

“This surprising donation will really help us out and enable us to address differentiated provision for the remainder of the summer programme. It’s so encouraging to be recognised in such a manner and be supported by a company so intrinsically linked with the town.”

The Boaty Theatre Company will be performing an open-air production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest at Bridge Wellness Gardens on August 22 and 23. Its summer programme will run until August 29.

Essar Oil (UK) is a leading UK-focused downstream energy company that owns and operates the Stanlow refinery on the south side of the Mersey Estuary. Its produces 16% of UK road transport fuels, including 3bn litres of petrol a year.

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