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County Lifestyle and Leisure Magazine

Hats off to a fantastic night of fundraising for Molly Olly’s Wishes

Hats off to a fantastic night of fundraising for Molly Olly's Wishes
Laurence Jones Photography

Hats off to a fantastic night of fundraising for Molly Olly’s Wishes

HATS were stealing the ‘headlines’ at a charity ball where more than £65,000 was raised for Molly Olly’s Wishes.

A marquee at Billesley Manor near Alcester in Warwickshire was decked out in a Mad Hatter’s theme for the 9th annual Molly Olly Ball. Sporting wacky headgear, more than 500 guests were greeted by playing cards and led through a topiary garden by The Queen of Hearts and a rabbit to begin a magical evening of entertainment and fundraising.

Hats off to a fantastic night of fundraising for Molly Olly's Wishes

Laurence Jones Photography

The line up included magicians, illuminated dancers gliding on hoverboards and pixel poi jugglers courtesy of Feeding The Fish. Music was provided by The Soul Brothers followed by DJ James and Elias on percussion.

The evening featured a variety of fundraising activities including charity auction when prizes such as a Portugal holiday, diamond necklace and signed Aston Villa shirt were bid on. And it was all presided over by The Mad Hatter himself – alias Molly’s dad Tim Ollerenshaw.

It marks the culmination of months of preparation by the Molly Olly team who have been busy creating props as well as decorating the marquee.

Molly Olly’s Wishes was established in 2011 following the death of Rachel and Tim Ollerenshaw’s eight-year-old daughter Molly from a rare kidney cancer.

The Warwick-based charity works to support children with terminal or life-limiting illnesses and their families and help with their emotional wellbeing as well as grant wishes and donate therapeutic toys and books to both children directly and to hospitals throughout the UK.

Mascot of the charity is a therapeutic toy lion called Olly The Brave who has his own Hickman line and a detachable mane which helps to explain and normalise the effects of chemotherapy. These form part of an Olly The Brave pack that has now been handed out to more than 40 hospitals, along with a book from the charity’s exclusive Olly The Brave series.

Part of more than £2m raised to date, has also been used to fund the first Molly Olly consultant in paediatric medicine at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Rachel Ollerenshaw said: “It was an amazing night that would not be possible without the help and support of so many companies and individuals, who sponsored, gave time, prizes and all manner of the things to ensure as much money was raised as possible to help support children with life-threatening illnesses.

Hats off to a fantastic night of fundraising for Molly Olly's Wishes

Molly Ollerenshaw, aged eight

“Our guests were very respectful and took time to listen to our story and really understand the importance of our work. Through everyone’s generosity the charity night raised over £65,000. Thank you so much to everyone involved and all our sponsors and supporters including REPL Group, SCC, Fews Marquees, New Horizon Logistics, Morgan Parkes Recruitment and Viva Theatre Arts.”

Jo Reeves, Director of Sales at Billesley Manor, said: “We are delighted to have been able to host this year’s ball. The amount of money is just incredible to be able to help even more children. We hope everyone enjoyed the evening as much as we did.”

Molly Olly’s Wishes need the support of companies and individuals to enable the charity to help more children.

Rachel said: “We welcome the opportunity to provide more information about our work. Please help us to make those dark days brighter.”

Further information about Molly Olly’s Wishes or how to help or donate can be found at: www.mollyolly.co.uk or call Rachel on 07747 854914.

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