Colourful costumes light up Sheffield fancy dress party for breast cancer research

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One of Sheffield’s biggest fancy dress parties has been declared a ‘fantastic’ success after it once again raised thousands of pounds for breast cancer research.

Mosborough woman Michelle France. aged 58, organised the event at Sheffield Hallam University’s Hubs for the 16th year alongside her sisters-in-law Barbara France and Sharon Beresford.

The idea for the first ball came after Michelle was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1997. Sharon then suffered the same fate a year later, and the event carried on.

Tickets were limited to 600 for this year’s ball, but that didn’t stop attendees having a great time in costumes ranging from Pinocchio to prisoners, complete with their own bars.

“It was absolutely fantastic,” said a delighted Michelle after the ball. “The costumes were amazing yet again. I don’t know how people think of them. It was just unbelievable.”

Every year the three women donate the proceeds of the ball to the breast cancer research unit at Sheffield’s Royal Hallamshire Hospital.

The final total from this year’s event is still being worked out, but Michelle expects to take the total close to £90,000.

The team have no plans to stop and are now looking towards the 17th ball next year.

Michelle said: “It’s always a good party. Every year it gets better and it still means the same to us. That’s why we have done it for so long.

“It originally started as a one-off to say thank you to the people at the hospital. They literally saved my life.

“Ever since then people have been asking when the next one is. People always say they have sorted out what they are going as next year.”

Michelle thanked all those who came along, adding: “The hospital’s support is just priceless. Thank you just isn’t good enough.”