Industry charity BEN's annual ball raised more than £200,000.
While the lavish programme of entertainment every year at the event means it has become recognised as the start of the festivities for the sector, this year the celebrations were put on hold for a few moments at the start of the evening when a beneficiary of BEN support took to the stage.
Kate Weaver, whose husband is a mechanic, explained the life changing impact of BEN’s help during a personal crisis.
She told how during pregnancy she suffered a stroke and then gave birth while paralysed on her left side. With BEN’s help and support, specialist equipment was purchased which enabled her to walk again and return to sharing quality time with her family.
“I never thought we’d need help like this – but we are so, so grateful that it was there when we did. BEN gave back my independence and has quite literally been there every step of the way”.
More than 1,000 guests then enjoyed a full programme of entertainment including a performance from The Royal Logistics Corps Marching Band. Auction prizes were donated by Ferrari North Europe, Honda (UK), Douglas Stafford, Alphabet (GB), Blackshaws and, the star prize a Land Rover Discovery Sport 2.2D by Jaguar Land Rover, raised more than £87,000.
BEN's chief executive David Main said: “We’re so grateful to everyone who helped make the 2014 BEN Ball such a fantastic success. Kate shared with guests her family’s story of being helped by BEN – a very moving account and one that underlines the importance of the support and services BEN provides.
"The money raised on the night is vital as we extend our services and seek to meet the increasing need that exists across our industry. Thank you to all who contributed on the night and to the hundreds of companies and thousands of individuals who give regularly to ensure our support is there when colleagues need it.”