Stars including Simon Cowell, Dame Joan Collins, Sir Cliff Richard, Tony Hadley and Louis Walsh were out in force on Saturday to show their support for the Shooting Star Chase Ball, which raised more than £250,000 for children with life-limiting conditions in London and Surrey.
The event, which took place at The Dorchester on Park Lane, was hosted by radio legend Mike Read on the 50th anniversary of BBC Radio 1 and featured a set from Shooting Star Chase Vice President Tony Hadley.
300 guests enjoyed a five course meal by executive chef Henry Brosi before taking part in a live auction of money-can’t-buy lots including tickets to The X Factor final; Afternoon Tea with Dame Joan Collins and Julian Clary; a brand new bespoke Mini Cooper and a car owned by Shooting Star Chase Vice President Simon Cowell – which despite much persuasion by auctioneer Charlie Ross, Louis Walsh couldn’t be convinced to buy!
In an emotional address to guests at The Dorchester, Simon Cowell praised the work of staff caring for families supported by the charity: “Standing up and talking tonight is the easy bit. What the staff do to support the children and families, and the emotional toll that has, you realise how amazing they are. They have the toughest job in the world.”
Now in its 13th year, the Shooting Star Chase Ball has raised more than £1.5 million for the children’s hospice charity since its launch in 2004.
Karen Sugarman, Director of Fundraising at Shooting Star Chase, said: “The Shooting Star Chase Ball is always a very special evening and this year has been no exception. We are so thrilled and overwhelmed by the generosity from each and every one of our guests and their support will make a huge difference to the lives of the children and families we provide vital care for at our hospices.”