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942 WALKERS PAINT THE TOWN PINK FOR MICHAEL SOBELL HOSPICE!
Women, men and their four-legged friends descended on Michael Sobell Hospice on Friday for the annual Ladies in the Night five and a half or nine-mile walking challenge – the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Hospice.
Despite an early rain shower, spirits were certainly not dampened as walkers were treated to a variety of on-stage fun and frolics in the build-up to the event with performances by West Herts College dance students, high-energy warm-ups courtesy of Mishi Mishi and Highgrove Pool and Fitness, plus toe-tapping anthems to get walkers in the mood provided by DJ Truck.
Local businesses rallied round and lent their support on the night, including volunteers from Barclays Bank, Uxbridge, who ran a tombola stall which proved very popular, local lady and face-painter Imogen Daisy-Wilsher made sure as many walkers as possible were adorned with glow-in-the-dark face paint for a small donation to the Hospice, local photographer Trevor Burrows, snapped as many walkers from start-to-finish as he could, representatives from Rickmansworth-based Cox, Costello and Horne, manned the merchandise area and will be donating £500 towards the fundraising pot, and The Body Shop, Uxbridge, provided a team of walking marshals to help ensure walker safety on the night.
Once the clock struck 10.00pm, 942 walkers – a vision in pink, set off from the Hospice, based on the Mount Vernon Hospital site, donning cowboy hats, flashing jewellery and bright pink t-shirts – kindly sponsored for the sixth-year-running by Northwood-based Savills Estate Agents, along with co-sponsor M Moss Repairs Ltd.
Douglas Sleaper, Head of Savills Northwood, commented: “Supporting our local community is intrinsic to our ethos at Savills. As such, our office has been an advocate of Michael Sobell Hospice Charity for a number of years. This important charity provides a centre of excellence for specialist palliative care services enhancing, without discrimination, the care of patients with life-limiting illness and providing support for their families and carers. The work the hospice carries out is absolutely essential – it is a cause close to many of our hearts and we are delighted to be able to support it.”
A number of thirst-quenching water and sweetie stops provided a vital pick-me-up and a re-charge of batteries for walkers along their journey – thanks to the team at Merchant Taylors School, Northwood, and Northwood Football Club, including entertainment from singing policeman Ashley Webber.
On completion of their challenge at the finish line, walkers were presented with a well-deserved souvenir certificate, hot drink, Danish pastries, biscuits and chocolates, kindly supported by Steve Carr and family, and Waitrose, Northwood, back at base.
Commenting on the event, MSH Events and Community Fundraising Manager, Ophelia Chambers-Henry said: “We are absolutely thrilled with the turnout for this year’s event in aid of Michael Sobell Hospice. Many of our walkers have returned to take on the challenge once again, and some are completely new to us, so it’s simply fantastic to be part of it. On behalf of Michael Sobell Hospice Charity, I would like to send my heartfelt thanks to all our fantastic volunteers, marshals, local business sponsors and to everyone who took part. The money raised from this event makes a huge difference to what we are able to fund each year towards hospice services.”
Over 60 teams took part in the walking challenge, including the largest team entry with 68 members from Pinner-based West Lodge Primary School.
The Charity is urging participants to send in any sponsorship monies as soon as possible as this makes a huge difference to the overall funds raised from the event.
2017 will see the 40th anniversary year for Michael Sobell Hospice, with event organisers planning a very special Ladies in the Night event, with a twist to be announced shortly.
For more information about the work of Michael Sobell Hospice Charity, please visit www.michaelsobellhospice.co.uk