Famous faces from the world of art, design, music and TV - including the Duchess of York, Jo Wood, Tracey Emin and Yasmin Mills - enjoyed a sparkling night of dinner and entertainment at Michelin-starred restaurant sketch in Mayfair on Monday 25 January.
The fundraising event was hosted by CLIC Sargent Ambassadors Richard and Susan Young. It included a special live auction featuring artworks from Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin, a private dining experience with top chef Mark Hix, and a night with comedian David Walliams.
Richard, a well-known photographer to the stars, and his wife Susan have been involved with CLIC Sargent since 2000 and Susan has previously chaired the successful CLIC Sargent Fantasy Ball, which has raised millions of pounds since its inception.
Richard and Susan spoke on behalf of the charity and asked guests to pledge £5,000 – the amount needed to fund a child or young person through a year of their cancer treatment.
One of the stars of the evening was Lucy Northrop, 29, who told a captivated audience about her experience of childhood cancer. She was interviewed by Hello! magazine celebrity reporter Scott Wimsett.
Lucy, from Essex, was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma of the wrist in May 2010 when she was just 22. Lucy had chemotherapy, surgery and radiotherapy and successfully finished treatment in March 2011. Throughout her treatment Lucy was supported by a CLIC Sargent Nurse called Dee.
She said: “Dee is my CLIC Sargent nurse and deals with patients around my age. She came into my life at the most crucial time and made such a difference. I didn’t know what to expect at our first meeting, but she tried to make sense of lot of questions I needed answering. She was so friendly and had a wealth of knowledge.
“Dee became one of my lights when most of them had gone out. Dee taught me that it was ok to be upset and frustrated at times. She taught me that no question was ever too silly, and was with me every step of the way. My treatment would have been a lot harder without Dee – I can’t thank her enough.”
CLIC Sargent Major Events Manager Hannah Gripton said: “This year’s Opera Dinner was a fantastic occasion. The venue was a work of art and we’re delighted to have raised more than £90,000, which will help support children and young people whose lives have been turned upside down by cancer.
“We’d like to thank Richard and Susan Young, the event Committee, our sponsors and those who have donated auction prizes for making the evening such an amazing success.”