THE OUTGOING Mayor of Stockton-on-Tees marked his final engagement in the role this month with a stunning contribution to local charities.

At Stockton Borough Council’s Annual General Meeting on 3rd April Councillor Jim Beall presented representatives of his chosen charities, the North East Autism Society (NEAS) and Eastern Ravens Trust, with a cheque for £42,484, raised throughout his term as mayor.

The money will go jointly to both charities and be used on a project to provide support to families with autistic children.  

CEO at NEAS, John Phillipson, said: “It’s an incredible amount of money and we’re so grateful to have been chosen as one of Cllr Beall’s charities.”

He added:

On behalf of NEAS, I’d like to thank Cllr Beall for his outstanding support in the past year, and of course to everyone who contributed to the funds raised in any way.

The North East Autism Society opened Kiora Hall, a specialist school for autistic children and young people aged 5-19, in Cllr Beall’s ward of Roseworth in 2022, and has become part of the community there ever since. 

Fundraising efforts by Cllr Beall include the auction of an original piece created by world-famous artist and NEAS patron Mackenzie Thorpe, which sold for £11,000 at the Mayor of Stockton-on-Tees’s fundraising ball in February.

Other donations sold at the auction amounted to another £6,000 raised for the charities, and the former mayor and mayoress were active in other fundraising efforts, hosting afternoon teas, raffles, and other events.

The former mayor’s penultimate act in office was scaling the 18m high Air Trail at the Tees Barrage, in a challenge that added £300 to the final funds raised for NEAS and Eastern Ravens. 

Cllr Beall is succeeded as Mayor by Cllr John Gardner, who has chosen to support Parkinson’s UK and Leo’s Neonatal as his nominated charities.