A FIRST-of-its-kind charity ball has raised £14,000 for Hampshire Hospitals Charity, after over 100 guests danced and dined at Basingstoke’s Audleys Wood Hotel.

The black-tie event, which took place on Saturday, October 28, featured a live band, a three-course meal and a dance performance from the Basingstoke Academy of Dancing, as well as entertainment from artist Matt Homer.

The evening also hosted a silent auction and raffle, which together raised over £8,000. Some of the prizes included afternoon tea at London's The Savoy Hotel, fly fishing on the River Test, and an archaeology experience at The British Museum.

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Funds raised on the evening will support the charity’s flagship campaign, The Magic Lion Appeal, which is committed to improving hospital services for children and young people seen at Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (HHFT).

All of the trust’s sites, including hospitals in Basingstoke, Andover and Winchester, are to benefit from the improvements which are to include redecoration of spaces, investment in play facilities and equipment, as well as a large-scale reconfiguration of some wards.

To complete the project, the charity is hoping to raise a total of £400,000. Hampshire Hospitals Charity is the official NHS charity for HHFT and aims to raise over £1m every year to support its services.

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Chief executive at HHFT, Alex Whitfield, said: “It was simply fantastic to see so many people come together in support of our charity. The generosity and kindness of our guests was just astonishing.

“Hampshire Hospitals Charity makes such a huge difference every single day to our patients, staff and volunteers across our hospitals and it’s all only possible thanks to our wonderful supporters – we really couldn’t do it without them.”

The charity has revealed that the event will be returning for a second year in 2024.

More information about Hampshire Hospitals Charity can be found at hampshirehospitalscharity.org.