Hurley Hotel Group and Project Discovery


Neil Sachse – A truly great Australian! I was honoured when in 2014 Neil invited me to be Patron of Project Discovery – Bringing spinal cord research into the 21st Century.

Neil Sachse, a star SANFL North Adelaide player transferred to play for Footscray (now Western Bulldogs) in 1975.

An on-field collision changed the life of Neil Sachse forever. Neil was left a quadriplegic from the accident, but the injury and the way he handled it in the decades since, have made a positive contribution to the lives of many.

Peter and I alongside many hoteliers in South Australia supported Neil’s foundation with fundraising events over many years. His foundation has succeeded with some amazing results in awareness, prevention and research.

Neil and I become friends, talking constantly about his ambition to improve diagnosis and treatment spinal cord injury.

It was fortunate that I knew the Chair of SAHMRI – Raymond Spencer – as we are both strong supporters of the Adelaide Football Club.

Raymond introduced us to Steve Wesselingh – CEO SAHMRI - and Project Discovery was born! The Foundation continues researching advanced imaging of the spine to revolutionise the diagnosis and prognosis of spinal cord injury and other spinal pathologies.

Assisting and supporting Project Discovery was advertising guru Andrew Killey who put together a fabulous video pro bono to launch Project Discovery. What an amazing journey it has been to date.

I am in awe of the dedicated team at the Neil Sachse Centre – Spinal Cord Research and Project Discovery, who continue to honour Neil’s memory.

I will continue to assist as best I can by supporting, fundraising and promoting the work of the incredible research team.

We at Hurley Hotel Group sponsor the annual Project Discovery Classic bike ride raising funds for the ongoing research and will continue to do so in the future.

My son-in-law, Scott Oakley participated in fundraising and the ride in November this year helping raise $67,000 to date – what an achievement by all involved. Donations are still warmly welcomed via the Donations page until December 31st 2021.