SHEFFIELD Children’s Hospital received a massive £135,000 boost at its annual star studded Winter Ball - smashing the £70,000 target for the night.
Deputy PM Nick Clegg, his wife Miriam González Durántez, athlete Jessica Ennis and former world superbike champion James Toseland were among the guests at the glittering event.
The huge sum raised, all of which goes directly to the hospital’s work, was bumped up by an anonymous phone bidder who paid £53,000 for a place in the 2012 Dunhill Links Golf Championship, donated by Lee Westwood.
Prizes from charity patrons included a pair of Jessica Ennis’s signed running spikes and a pillion ride with superbike racer James Toseland, who brought his girlfriend, singer-songwriter Katie Melua, to the black tie bash.
Charity patron Miriam González Durántez was joined by Nick Clegg, who made an impromptu speech praising NHS staff and encouraging the guests to ‘dig deep’.
Keane’s Tom Chaplin gave an intimate acoustic performance and Britain’s Got Talent stars Stavros Flatley were joined on stage by charity mascot Theo Bear.
The money raised at the event, at Ponds Forge Sports Centre, will enable The Children’s Hospital Charity to renew the hydrotherapy pool at the Ryegate Centre Therapy Block and fund two 3D Pain Distraction Units.
It will be added to money raised by former England cricket captain and patron Michael Vaughan and his team this year. Vaughan’s Great Wall of China Trek in September raised £185,000 towards ground-breaking surgical equipment for the hospital theatres, which, thanks to the ball, is now fully funded.
David Vernon-Edwards, charity director, said: “We have some incredibly generous supporters and we are so grateful to them all for their amazing contributions, especially when times are hard.
“This was our most successful Winter Ball yet and will enable us to change even more lives at the Children’s Hospital. We can’t thank everyone enough on behalf of the patients, families and staff at our amazing hospital.”