Bicton Arena hosts charity fundraising event
The evening, attended by a number of famous faces, raised nearly £40,000 for Motor Neurone Disease Association, Cancer Research UK, Teenage Cancer Trust, and Spinal Research.
Andrew Nicholson, William Fox-Pitt, Sam Twiston-Davies, Paul Nicholls, Philip Hobb, Sharon Hunt, Lucinda Green, Nick Schofield and Lucy Wiegersma are just a few of the names who pledged their support of the event, as well as Badminton and Burley Horse Trials which donated prizes for the charity auction.
Money raised will be split between the four charities that have been selected following tragic events and illnesses that have struck well-known and respected members of the community.
International event rider Aaron Millar launched The Eventing Family when he was left seriously injured after a car crash. Friends, family and colleagues rallied round him with support and formed a committee to create a fundraising party.
The eventing community was soon rocked further by even more sad news, learning that four star event rider Ben Hobday and 17-year-old Hannah Francis are battling with cancer and the news that Bicton Arena Manager Helen West’s mother is suffering from motor neurone disease.
The team decided to host a special evening to raise funds as part of Bicton Arena British Eventing International Horse Trials.
Guests at the event were treated to a live performance from Joey the Lips and an auction of promises as well as a slave auction with members of the eventing community giving up their evening to become ‘slaves’ for the lucky bidders.
Helen West helped to host the event alongside Bicton Arena colleagues Beccy Barrett, Gemma Cooke, Debbie and Alex Jackson, Miranda Collett and Lucy Johnstone. In addition, British Eventing technical advisor Andrew Fell has taken on the role of Director of the committee whilst well-known riders such as Mary King, William Fox-Pitt, Harry Meade and Matt Frost all made generous donations to the auction to help boost funds.
Helen said: “The whole eventing community has been shocked and saddened this year by a string of bad news. We are a very dedicated group of people, a true family, and we support each other whether we are competing against each other or riding alongside.
She continued: “It has been an honour and a privilege to be a part of something so positive in the wake of these sad events. The community has really pulled together to host a fantastic event where top riders, officials, coaches, grooms and volunteers alike all got together to celebrate our wonderful sport and raise much needed funds for these four fantastic charities. Our work won’t stop here; we will continue to work together to support one another, but we would like to thank everyone involved and all those who joined us for this special evening.”
To find out more about The Eventing Family, please go to www.eventingfamily.com
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