Barrie Wells outside the Business School
Barrie Wells outside the Business School

Edge Hill University welcomed honorary doctor Barrie Wells MBE, an inspirational sports philanthropist and successful entrepreneur, to campus.

Barrie, originally from Litherland and a student of Merchant Taylors’ School in Crosby, was invited to speak to Business School students about the highlights of his business career and the charity work he has dedicated himself to since 2008.

He said: “Every time I come back to Edge Hill it seems bigger and better. The students gave me a warm welcome and I enjoyed talking to them about my career.

“They had lots of questions about the charity work and it’s great to see the younger generation so enthusiastic about giving something back. I’m looking forward to going back to the Sports Centre, which I opened with Katarina Johnson-Thompson.”

Barrie Wells talks to Business School students
Barrie Wells talks to Business School students

Barrie is known for his remarkable charity work. In 2009, he set up the Wells Sports Foundation, which helps support young athletes, after being inspired by a visit to the Beijing Olympic Games.

Athletes who have benefitted include Heptathlon World Champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson, and Olympic medallists Keely Hodgkinson, Jessica Ennis-Hill and Beth Tweddle.

The following year he launched Box4Kids, which provides seriously ill and disabled children with VIP experiences in executive boxes at sporting and entertainment venues. So far, this scheme has helped more than 11,000 children and their families enjoy a once in a lifetime experience.

Barrie was made an Honorary Doctor of Business Administration by Edge Hill University in 2014 in recognition of his remarkable charity work.

Dr Susie Marriott, senior lecturer in the Business School, said: “It was fantastic to welcome Barrie to the Business School at Edge Hill University. Students were very engaged and interested in hearing about his experiences in business as well as his philanthropic work. Learning all about the fantastic work Barrie has done through Box4Kids was inspiring, as were the stories he shared from his career in business.”

MA Marketing Communications & Branding student Nicola Horton said: “It was really great to hear all about Barrie’s work on the business side and his charity work as well. I was really inspired by the work he does with hospitals to offer children amazing experiences through Box4Kids.”

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