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21/03/2016 Britannia Construction kick starts a year of supporting Action for M.E.

Gloucestershire based Britannia Construction have voted to support Action for M.E. throughout 2016 after employee Louise Dunn highlighted its vital work raising awareness of the chronic disabling condition, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.).

Speaking of the condition, Louise who works as Commercial Administrator at the firm and was diagnosed with M.E. in September 2015 after living with symptoms for two years said:

“My colleagues at Britannia recognised that sometimes I couldn’t even walk across the office because I was in so much pain. I was getting heart palpitations, extreme exhaustion and I had aches in my body that were very painful.”

Paul Halfpenny, Managing Director, Britannia Construction, said:

“This charity is close to the hearts of all at Britannia, we’re pleased we can support Action for M.E. in raising awareness of the condition and educating others of the effects of living with M.E. Each month we will be communicating a different focus both internally and through social media to help others understand the illness.

“At the end of 2015, we took a staff vote on which charities we should support. Louise championed the charity and we supported her. We’re delighted to be working with Action for M.E. alongside our charity partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support.

“We held a Charity Auction at the end of last year and are delighted to be able to kick off our relationship with Action for M.E. with a donation of £2,500 which was raised by our staff, customers and suppliers at the event.”

Action for M.E. CEO Sonya Chowdhury says:

“We are hugely grateful to Louise and Britannia as we rely on the hard work of our supporters to help us continue providing vital information, advice and support services for people with M.E., as well as campaigning to raise awareness and drive forward much-needed research.”

With support from Britannia, Louise has been able to retain her job, though many people with M.E. are too ill to work, with around a quarter so severely affected that they remain bed or housebound.

After working with specialists at the M.E./CFS clinic at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, and with support from her family, Louise began to use a technique called pacing to help her manage her symptoms.

“Until I accepted my condition I wasn’t able to look into things that could help me,” says Louise. “I might not be able to go back to the way I used to be, but this is who I am now, so I’ve adapted my lifestyle to that.”

Action for M.E. and Britannia will work together to help raise awareness and understanding of M.E. throughout 2016, while Louise is working up to her own personal challenge: the Great Bristol 10K on 15th May.

“Before I was ill I was running 25 miles a week quite easily: duathlons, half-marathons, you name it,” says Louise. “So when all this started and I was barely able to walk, it hit me really hard. I downloaded the ‘Couch to 5k’ app and went back to basics. Through the support of my wonderful husband, Rob and my children Harrison and Amelia, I feel ready for the challenge I have set myself.”

If you would like to sponsor Louise please visit her Just Giving page:

Britannia Construction has 10 sites across the South West and South Wales and its Head Office is located in Cheltenham. For more information on Britannia Construction please visit


Issued on behalf of Britannia Construction by Prestbury Marketing & Consulting Limited

For further information, please contact Jenny Jervis

Tel: 0797 985 7326



For more information, or to request an interview with Action for M.E. contact Head of Communications and Policy Clare Ogden

Tel: 0117 937 6622



About Action for M.E.

Action for M.E. ( is the UK’s leading charity working to improve the lives of people with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.). Our mission is empowering people with M.E. to fulfil their potential and secure the care and support they need, while working towards a greater understanding of the illness and ultimately a cure.

M.E. is a chronic, disabling condition affecting around 250,000 adults and children in the UK, and 17 million people worldwide. Defined by the World Health Organisation as a neurological condition, it may be diagnosed as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS, or M.E./CFS) or post-viral fatigue syndrome (PVFS). This should not be confused with chronic fatigue, which is a different illness.

People with M.E. experience severe, persistent fatigue associated with what’s called post-exertional malaise (the body’s inability to recover after expending even small amounts of energy; sometimes also called ‘payback’) and chronic pain.

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recognises that the physical symptoms of M.E. can be as disabling as multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, congestive heart failure and other chronic conditions.

Pacing involves balancing activity and rest to bring about more stability in symptoms, and what someone with M.E. can manage every day. The word “activity” is used in a broad sense, to include mental and emotional activity, as well as the more obvious physical sort. For some, activity may be very minimal (especially for those who are severely affected) yet still cause considerable impact on energy and symptoms.

The Great Bristol 10K ( takes place on Sunday 15 May.

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