Networking charity cash

Pictured at the launch of the Master Cutler's Challenge are: (front l-r): Richard Caborn, Paul Blomfield MP, Adrian Bailey MP, Master Cutler Pam Liversidge, Julie Elliott MP, Ann McKechin MP and David Ward MP; (rear l-r): Prof Keith Ridgeway of the AMRC, Brian Binley MP and Dr June Smailes of Cavendish Cancer Care
Pictured at the launch of the Master Cutler's Challenge are: (front l-r): Richard Caborn, Paul Blomfield MP, Adrian Bailey MP, Master Cutler Pam Liversidge, Julie Elliott MP, Ann McKechin MP and David Ward MP; (rear l-r): Prof Keith Ridgeway of the AMRC, Brian Binley MP and Dr June Smailes of Cavendish Cancer Care
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The Master Cutler’s annual charity Challenge takes on a new look this year, with professionals joining forces across company divides to see how much they can raise and challenge others to do the same.

Around 100 companies and individuals had signed up to take part in the Challenge ahead of the launch event in the Cutlers’ Hall, attended by members of a Parliamentary Select Committee, visiting the region as part of an investigation into apprenticeships.

Many more are expected to come onboard throughout the spring and summer, each pledging to use their initiative to turn £50 into as much money as possible, with the aim of raising tens of thousands of pounds for the main beneficiary charity, Cavendish Cancer Care.

This year, for the first time since the Challenge was launched, networks of professionals and companies from the same sectors have joined forces in joint efforts.

Sheffield’s Lyon’s Den business network, which has 1,100 members, has pledged to take part.

Property consultants are forming their own mini league as part of an initiative launched by Knight Frank’s Tim Bottrill and Nabarro has also launched a sector-wide effort among rivals law firms.

Meanwhile, the creative and digital sector has answered Electric Works’ call for a co-operative effort to raise funds too.

Lead sponsors Ant Marketing and law firm Irwin Mitchell are lending each participating team the £50 start-up stake and Ant is employing its skills as the UK’s largest telemarketing company to recruit local firms to the Challenge.

Master Cutler Pam Liversidge said: “To launch the Challenge with the support of so many MPs and companies of all sizes and types who are all committed to the cause along with such a large number of individuals ready to raise funds, is heartening and exciting.

“Sheffield and the wider region is blessed to have an organisation such as Cavendish Cancer Care, giving care and support to local people affected by a diagnosis of cancer.

“As Master Cutler I know that support for our local charities is vitally important as it enables them to continue with their essential services for us and our families. I am delighted to be able to support Cavendish Cancer Care this year and the numbers of people at the launch showed just how eager Sheffield is to support the Challenge and to help The Cavendish.”

Sheffield Central MP Paul Blomfield, who attended the launch as a member of the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee, said: “The Cavendish, which has its headquarters in my constituency, helps around 1,500 people and families each year through their excellent work in partnership with NHS cancer specialists. I hope this year’s Master Cutler’s Challenge is successful and I wish all fundraisers the very best of luck.”