The worlds of showbusiness, sport and music attended my charity ball at the Kimpton Clocktower Hotel in Manchester on 9th October, to raise funds for Variety, the Children’s Charity, Variety North-West, Teenage Cancer Trust, Mahdlo Youth Zone and Wigan Youth Zone.
Apart from being loads of fun, a staggering £750K was raised for the beneficiary charities. There was also an appearance from Ella Henderson, and 90s club legends Soul II Soul. This year’s event was presented by Greatest Hits Radio presenter Darren Proctor, and was made possible thanks to sponsorship from Robertson, Beaverbrooks, Boohoo, Elf on the Shelf, Fastdox, Network Space, Stocks 2015 Ltd and the Stoller Charitable Trust.
Other guests included Dame Joan Collins (wow!), showbiz legend Christopher Biggins, Man U hero Paul Scholes, Olympic stars Jayne Torvill, Christopher Dean, and TV stars Nikki Sanderson, Tamara Wall, Laura Pradelska and Lara Fraser.
Something else very exciting happened on the night… I was presented with the Presidential Citation International Award. This is the highest honour bestowed from International Variety in the USA to the most deserving person who has done a lot to support children. The Award has been given out since 1937, the ceremony is usually held at a grand conference somewhere in the world but due to Covid this couldn’t happen. A HUGE thank you to the UK Variety trustees, Chief Barkers past and present, who all agreed that I should be nominated for this award
As well as exciting performances and delicious food. The event featured an auction, with guests able to bid to get their hands on some money-can’t-buy experiences. The lots included VIP tickets to the Dancing On Ice Live Final, which of course is co-presented by Torvill and Dean, who attended the event, Centre Court tickets at the Queen’s Club for next year’s Fever-Tree Tennis Championships, a week of work experience with the team behind the Ministry of Sound, tickets to the Royal Variety Performance 2021 and Aftershow Party, Christmas Transformations & Treats from Pescado, an 18K white gold 45mm Swiss ChronoGraff watch, a brand new unregistered Fiat Abarth Campovolo, 2 VIP tickets to attend the recording of James Corden’s Late Late Show in LA, a Boodles VIP experience, an iconic night to remember at the Royal Albert Hall, a signed ‘Queen in 3D’ book by Brian May, with a Brian May signed insert and Brian May signed ‘Red Special’ guitar, two VIP tickets to the star-studded Global Gift Gala 2021 in London, a VIP Breakfast and Football Masterclass with Paul Scholes, and an exclusive invitation to the Dolce & Gabanna FW22/23 womenswear show in Milan.
Here’s to 2022 (and yes, I am thinking about it already..!)
(Photos by Carl Sukonik)
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