The Covid pandemic meant RRA, just like almost all companies in the UK – and across the world – could not have a 2020 Christmas Party. So, when MD, Mark Powles, suggested a RRA company trip to Center Parcs in 2021 to make up for missing our much loved Christmas ‘do’, we jumped at the chance.
It was a challenge to find dates that everyone could make and when Center Parcs had five lodges together available. Then, when the second lockdown scuppered our plans to go in May, we had the challenge of re-organising it again for September.
The trip was a huge success with the already close-knit team bonding even more, we’ll let them say it below in their own words along with a little selection of photos to enjoy:
Just one of our team couldn’t make it, RRA Associate Oliver Smith, who had the rather wonderful reason of a brand new baby boy who kept him away – but next time we hope Oliver and all his family will join us.
Sadly Oliver has missed the previous two company events also, leading him to win the Hermit Award.
It was fun to video call Oliver during our ‘September Secret Santa’ so he could be there for a little bit of the weekend with us. Little did he know Steffany had organised a secret gift to be delivered to Olivers Wife so we could surprise him at the same time.
“I really loved having everyone together, it was a chance to get to know people who I don’t work so closely with and meeting people’s partners and children. It was such a lovely group of people without exception, I felt really lucky to be part of it. I particularly enjoyed the Awards presented by Sarah-Jane and Steffany, they were hilarious and so well thought out (I won Best Mime Award for being the most likely to not realise I’m on mute in a teams/zoom meeting). Also, the board games which were so much fun, even if they did get a bit heated at times!”
“It was a privilege to be able to take the team and their families away to reward them for all their hard work and commitment over the last 18 months. I can honestly say it was worth all the time, effort and every penny, knowing that this reward was appreciated. The time together strengthened bonds in the already close team and I fully believe that a happy team is a productive one.
It also helped that Oliver, husband to our fabulous Business Manager, Jane, is a professional (and exceptional) chef. So we ate like kings and queens as Oliver produced 5 star food for all 26 people.”
“I cannot thank the RRA Team enough for such a fantastic weekend. Myself and my partner brought our little two-year old along and everybody made her feel so welcome and included her in activities and our secret Santa. She had an absolutely lovely time and keeps telling people how she went on holiday with “mummy’s work friends”. After such a tough year, what a lovely way to unwind and have fun with such a lovely group of people. I feel very lucky to be apart of such a wonderful team.”
“The Centre Parks trip was a fantastic opportunity for me to get to know our extended family of people at RRA Architects. As a new employee I welcomed the trip as a chance to get to know the team better and introduce myself to others. Centre Parks was a great place to do this, and from arriving here we were able to relax together and enjoy the environment. Rachel and Mark are incredibly generous, and I am so grateful for being invited into this community we have at RRA Architects.”
“Going to Centre Parcs has been great for the team to all come together but also was a lovely change of scene, especially after working from home at times through the year. My favourite part was playing board games and exposing everyone’s competitive nature which was really funny. I was pleasantly surprised at how well we all got on as a group in a different setting and it definitely brought us all closer as a team.”
“I’d never been to Centre Parcs before and it was a great setting for everybody to let off some steam after a busy last 18 months. It was good to get everybody together rather than as faces on a screen and to get to know some of the newer members of the team properly. A really enjoyable weekend but some fairly questionable pool skills!”
“It was lovely to see everyone enjoying themselves away from work and having a good time! The trip felt much more like a family holiday than a work event, which is a credit to how close the team are.”
“As I am based in the Gloucester office, it was nice to see the rest of the team from the Hereford office as well as having the opportunity to bond and get to know everyone as I am fairly new to RRA. I wasn’t sure what to expect as I had not been to a centre parcs before but loved the different activities. Thank you to all for a great team getaway.”
“The team getaway was a great chance to get to know everyone and their partners that bit more… As well as seeing everyone’s competitive sides during the several tournaments across the weekend. It’s safe to say that I won’t be winning at Bowling any time soon!!
Huge thanks to the Directors for such a fun weekend, I feel very lucky to be a part of such a close knit team.”
Thank you to all the RRA Team, their partners and children who joined us – without you it would have been very dull. You made it the fabulous, enjoyable time it was.
We are looking forward to the next one already.