A GALA dinner at a restaurant near Newbury has raised more than £40,000 for a cancer charity, inspired by a personal story on the night.
The Woodspeen hosted its first fundraising gala dinner for cancer charity Macmillan Cancer Support last month.
Restaurant owner and two-time Michelin star chef, John Campbell, created a six-course menu especially for the gala, which was met with great acclaim from the guests.
Giving sharp focus to the evening was a speech by Pete Barty, who revealed he became a Macmillan volunteer after a suspected shoulder injury turned out to be a bone cancer diagnosis in November 2009.
He said: “I was sat with my wife and Helen, my Macmillan nurse.
“Suddenly everything I’d known was taken away. My first daughter wasn’t even two yet.”
With practical and emotional support from his Macmillan nurse, his cancer treatment included replacing part of his bone with metal, which restricted the movement in his arm.
Now in remission, Mr Barty decided to become involved with Macmillan to raise money to help others.
Macmillan fundraising manager for North West Hampshire and West Berkshire, Rachel Docherty, said: “I would like to thank everyone involved for making this evening such a success, in particular the chair of Newbury committee Erica Tipton, Liz Storey and the fantastic team at The Woodspeen, including Alessandro Fasoli and John Campbell.”
A charity auction also helped to boost funds, hosted by local auctioneer Thomas Plant, of Flog It! and Bargain Hunt television series fame, with prizes including a stay in Hotel Ritz, Madrid, and a London dinner for six at The Shard.
For information on fundraising for Macmillan, telephone 0300 1000 200 or visit www.macmillan.org.uk/fundraising
To find out more about support from Macmillan, visit www.macmillan.org.uk or telephone 0808 808 00 00.