Last Thursday night a record number of noted personalities from the UK drinks industry gathered at The Benevolent Ball at The Dorchester, supporting their trade charity by raising £42,000.
The evening began with a 'Salon des Champagnes' reception and Sparkling Tombola, where every ticket won a golden box of sparkling wine bottles. At dinner, The Benevolent’s chairman Tom Yusef kicked off proceedings by paying tribute to the charity’s late trustee and former chairman Dan Townsend.
Mike Mackenzie, one of the charity's beneficiaries, was the evening's guest speaker. He explained how the trade charity has been providing him with financial and practical help for many years. He spoke of the emotional support he received during his very difficult time and urged members of the trade to support their trade charity.
The evening also saw the announcement of the Taittinger Collection grand draw. The Taittinger Collection comprises the entire collection of thirteen rare champagne vintages presented in exclusive bottles designed by world renowned artists and released by Champagne Taittinger over the last 35 years.
Sound like your cup of tea (or glass of champagne)? The collection of 13 bottles can potentially be won by purchasing tickets for the Grand Draw online for £20 per ticket, with the winner announced during the IWC Awards Dinner on 6 July.
Other highlights included a live performance from the band SUPERfreak, the Hi-Spirits Cocktail Bar, casino tables and a vintage photo booth.
'The Benevolent Ball is our flagship fundraising event of the year and is always a very popular event. However, this year we had a record attendance with tickets sold out and we judged it to be our most successful and enjoyable ball with a palpable buzz of engagement in the room,' said chief executive David Cox. 'We are indebted to our generous sponsors and all those who supported us.'