The Julia’s House annual Butterfly Ball has raised more than £40,000 for the children’s hospice charity.
The sell-out event, held at Canford School, was attended by 160 guests including two of the charity’s patrons, actor Martin Clunes and actress and impressionist Debra Stephenson, who both pitched in to make the evening a success.
Martin Clunes conducted the charity auction which including two lots he had donated - a walk-on part in the next series of Doc Martin and one of the suits his character wore in the hit TV show. They turned out to be the star lots, attracting combined bids to the tune of £2,250.
Debra Stephenson brought the house down when she rounded off the evening by singing the opera classic Oh Mio Babbino Caro, receiving a standing ovation.
As well as a three-course dinner and charity auction, there was also live music, entertainment and dancing.
The charity’s corporate and events manager, Linda Schofield-Green, said she was thrilled by the amount raised, which was £8,000 up on the previous year and a record for a Julia’s House ball.
“It was such an amazing night. We had patrons, trustees, supporters, parents, staff and volunteers all playing their part and contributing to a wonderful family atmosphere. Martin and Debra were just superb. We are so grateful to them and to everyone for making the ball such an outstanding success.
“I cannot imagine how we are ever going to top that next year!”