Shop Direct, which operates retail brands Very.co.uk and Littlewoods.com, has raised £210,000 at its fifth biennial charity ball, which this year took guests back to the 90s.
Funds raised from the event will go towards helping charities The Whitechapel Centre and The Booth Centre, which are based in Liverpool and Manchester respectively, to improve digital inclusion and employment for some of the North West’s most excluded and impoverished people. In November 2017, Shop Direct committed to raising £600,000 over two years for the two homelessness charities through colleague fundraising and events.
The ball, which was held on Friday 16 November at the Liverpool Exhibition Centre, saw 1,000 guests enjoy dinner and a spectacular evening of entertainment. Attendees danced the night away to chart-toppers Blue, S Club 3, Jason Donovan and Chesney Hawkes.
Guests also bid to win a selection of coveted items and experiences including corporate hospitality at Liverpool vs Arsenal, a meet and greet with Madness, VIP hospitality to see Take That at Anfield, tickets to the X Factor live grand final and afternoon tea at The Ritz.
The evening was hosted by the star of ITV’s ‘Catchphrase’ and ‘Britain’s Got More Talent’, Stephen Mulhern and the charity auction was led by doctor, author and television presenter, David Bull. Other celebrity guests included stars past and present from ITV’s The Only Way Is Essex and The Real Housewives of Cheshire.
Henry Birch, CEO at Shop Direct, said: “It was a superb night and I want to thank each one of our guests for their huge generosity – it really was humbling. The money raised will make a massive difference in helping people affected by homelessness across Liverpool and Manchester.
“We couldn’t have raised this sum without our generous sponsors, partners, colleagues and volunteers who donated outstanding prizes, helped on the night and continue to back Shop Direct, The Whitechapel Centre and The Booth Centre.”
David Carter, CEO at The Whitechapel Centre, said: “We’re hugely grateful to everyone who donated during the course of what was an amazing evening. This money will help us reach more homeless people and their families across the Liverpool City Region and in Manchester.”
Amanda Croome, CEO at The Booth Centre, added: “It was a fantastic night for us and we’re so grateful to everyone that supported the event. Our partnership with Shop Direct isn’t just letting us help people experiencing homelessness, but we’re also using the company’s advice and expertise to introduce invaluable new technology to support that work.”