Amid steelworks gloom, businesses raise £38,000 for Teesside Communities

October 20th, 2015

MORE than 400 people helped Teesside’s biggest annual charity dinner raise £38,000 for local good causes on Saturday.

Held for the first time in the Grand Marquee at Wynyard Hall, Middlesbrough and Teesside Philanthropic Foundation’s Annual Dinner was hailed “a massive success” by the charity’s founder and chairman Andy Preston.

He said he hoped the fundraiser would “spread a little fairness and goodwill” across Teesside amid the steelworks gloom.

The funds will be shared between community groups and people who need it most across Teesside during the forthcoming months.

Hosted by Middlesbrough FC PA announcer Mark Page, the fundraiser featured performances by Stockton’s X-Factor star Kerrianne Covell and local band Storm.

Middlesbrough’s three-times Olympian Chris Tomlinson talked about the Foundation’s new FAST Fund to help talented local sportspeople fulfil their potential.

Two auctions raised £19,000, with two winning bidders each getting a week-long stay in a luxury Mallorcan villa for £5,000 each, while a dining experience for 10 at Rudby Hall raised £1,200.

Billingham-born musician Paul Smith donated a meet-and-greet with his hit band Maximo Park before their forthcoming Newcastle concert, raising £600, while a painting of the Transporter Bridge by Teesside’s Julie Foster Walker went for £1,000.

A £5 note issued by the Stockton and Cleveland Bank in 1811 raised a further £600 for the charity, while a VIP speedway experience with Redcar Bears went for £600.

Andy said: “Our Annual Dinner has now become a highlight in the Teesside calendar for dozens of local people and businesses. We’re grateful for the generous support of all who supported the event in any way.

“We’re all conscious of the fact that the steelworks issues are impacting on local families and businesses. Events like this can play a small role in spreading a bit of fairness and goodwill, whilst helping to create a few opportunities for local people too.

“Certainly, we promise every penny will be distributed amongst those who need it most here on Teesside.”

Headline Sponsors for the event were Active Chartered Financial Planners, while Co-Sponsors were their fellow Stockton firm Endeavour Partnership.

Barclays Middlesbrough were Entertainment Sponsors, Cornerstone Business Solutions of Stockton were Wine Sponsors, while joint Dinner Sponsors were Middlesbrough’s Ecco Finishing Supplies and Marton Pharmacy.

Set up four years ago, the Philanthropic Foundation recently hit the £1 million fundraising milestone before receiving a further £700,000 boost from an anonymous benefactor.

Funds raised have helped set up dozens of local apprenticeships, supported food banks, helped local community groups and grass roots sports clubs and set up schemes to support those in recovery from drug and alcohol addictions.

The Foundation’s 40 patrons include Middlesbrough FC, Castlegate Shopping Centre, Devereux Transport, BHP Law, Nortech, Henderson Insurance Brokers, Evolution Business and Tax Advisors, Cleveland Cable, Erimus Insurance Brokers and Hunters Estate Agents.

  • The Foundation’s next fundraiser is a Ladies’ Lunch at the Middlesbrough Hotel (formerly the Thistle) on Thursday, November 19. Tickets are priced £30 each by calling 07948 191046 or emailing

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