ABTA LifeLine’s Annual Dinner 2017 London

Charlotte Mulvanerty -

Oh what a night! Our 2017 Annual Fundraising dinner was a huge success, it always is, but this year’s was the best yet.

Tuesday 26th September arrives and the travel industry once again descends onto the stunning RAF Club for plenty of food, fun and fundraising. LifeLine’s Trudie and Charlotte had been busy working their magic and with the wine loaded onto the tables, the incredible auction and raffle prizes displayed proudly and a donation envelope on each seat, we were ready.

Our lovely attendees arrive and chat away in the beautiful downstairs bar, sipping on bubbly, catching up with old friends, before heading up the grand staircase to the dinner hall with a delicious 3 course meal waiting.

There was plenty to keep our guests entertained, with Trudie on the microphone sharing LifeLine’s exciting news and the truly magical Mark Williams wowing everyone with his tricks. DIY SOS’s Nick Knowles even took the microphone to share some wonderfully inspiring tales of his travels and the families he has helped through his TV programme.

Nick then introduced a very special couple to come speak, Lin & Steve. Married in 2013, just 15 months later Lin could never have expected to be fighting to keep her husband alive. Steve suffered a massive stroke, and has since defied all odds with his miraculous recovery. The emotions around the room were overwhelming as Lin & Steve told us their story and how LifeLine has helped Steve to walk again, in fact he had just that weekend gone for a 2-mile walk with his friends and family, thanks to equipment LifeLine had purchased for him.

Onto the auction we went, with our wonderful auctioneer/Chairman Derek Jones taking to the stand with our amazing prizes, with holidays to Mexico, Mauritius and Italy just to name a few. After plenty of bidding wars it was time to announce the lucky winners of our raffle, who were over the moon with their prizes, including a Bottega Veneta clutch bag and a Fortnum & Mason wine hamper.

With a room full of friends we could never have expected the evening to finish on time, in fact 2 hours late there we all were, the seating plan well and truly out of the window, as everyone pulled up chairs and sat together for one big chat and laugh. All attendees thoroughly enjoyed themselves, but even more so Lin and Steve.

Thank you to everyone who attended and supported our dinner, your generosity was overwhelming and we raised an incredible £22,000. The difference these funds will make to your industry colleagues is remarkable, including making Lin & Steve’s dream of a two armed hug come true.

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