Leeds: The Crypt takes three titles in national awards

Homeless charity St George's Crypt carried off three top national awards at a plush London hotel.

The awards for the Leeds refuge which has helped homeless men in the city for 80 years recognised the quiet and determined way the charity promotes its work.

The Design Week Awards took place at the Park Lane Hilton Hotel in London.

The Crypt first opened its doors in 1930 to help victims of the Great Depression – the economic collapse which began in the United States and spread around the world.

The Crypt provided shelter, warmth, food and companionship mainly for jobless men on the road looking for work, or made homeless by the crash.

Although originally a temporary measure, its work continued, expanding to care for people with alcohol problems, and today drug addiction, domestic violence and other problems.

The Design Week Awards identify organisations who successfully promote themselves in imaginative ways.

The Crypt has produced moving photos of its work and its clients, combining them with reports about the Crypt. The Crypt is assisted by Leeds-based B&W Studio.

It won the scheme's award for Best Annual Report, and then being admitted to the scheme's Hall of Fame, it was finally named "Best of Show" – the top award.

Lynda Relph-Knight, Editor of Design Week, said the decision to award The Crypt with Best of Show "demonstrates how a blend of great design and storytelling can succeed when cash is tight."

The judges said: "B&W Studio created a report aimed at corporate partners who may contribute to the cause. It focuses on six people connected to the charity.

"Hard-hitting factual accounts are supported by large portraits taken by photographer John Angerson."

St George's Crypt was admitted to the Hall of Fame along with The Guardian newspaper, GF Smith and Selfridges.

The judges paid tribute to the honesty of the designs and the collaboration between client, designer, photographer and copywriter before adding: "We hope that St George's Crypt's entry into the Hall of Fame will encourage more charities and their designers to be bolder in their work."

Rachel Reeves.

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