Lots of Fun
The first charity ball of the season interlocked the party circuits of London life. After being bagpiped into a drinks reception flowing with Champagne Irroy and Bergerie de la Bastide 2015, Robert Davis MBE, Chairman of the Sir Simon Milton Foundation, welcomed guests to The Nine Kings Suite of the Royal Lancaster. There was much to celebrate. The Sir Simon Milton Westminster University College in Pimlico built by Taylor Wimpey Central London is up and running with bursaries funded by the Foundation. The Annual Tea Dance is now a fixture on the calendar for older Westminster citizens. Before the four course dinner began fellow Chairman John Barradell OBE said grace and Major General Matthew Sykes, Chief Executive of the charity, raised a glass to the Loyal Toast.
Entertainment, heard and unheard, carried on through dinner. The Silken Strings, a female electrica strings trio, top conservatoires’ finest (they’ve performed with Sir Elton John, Queen, Rhianna and Take That), looked like models, played like angels and danced like dervishes. A silent auction included Christmas dinner for four at No.50 Cheyne (guide price £300; sold price £500). William Edwards fine bone china (used on the Belmond Orient-Express and at The Queen of Afternoon Teas in Café Royal) was a corporate supporter. The vast room was wall to wall with luminaries such as Lady Lucy French OBE, Executive Member of the Sir Simon Milton Foundation, and doyenne of PR Maureen Sutherland Smith. A tribute band, Abba’s Angels, got everyone on their feet. Actor Christopher Biggins compèred the auction, declaring “Some tables here have stronger finances than Greece!”
- Lot 1 Oil painting by Ken Howard RA of Porthcurno, Cornwall (sold price £6,000)
- Lot 2 Two nights at the Park Hyatt Mallorca (sold price £2,500)
- Lot 3 A ‘meal for all seasons for four’: January dinner at Annabel’s; February lunch at Scott’s; April dinner at Daphne’s; May brunch in Balthazar; June dinner in Le Caprice; July dinner in J Sheekey; August lunch in Sexy Fish; September dinner at Mark’s Club; October brunch at 34; November lunch in Harry’s Dolce Vita; and Christmas breakfast at Sloane Street Deli (sold price £6,000)
- Lot 4 Two nights for two at a Dorchester Collection Hotel including Le Meurice Paris (sold price £4,000)
- Lot 5 Première of Frozen the Musical at Theatre Royal Drury Lane (sold price £2,500)