March 2010 marked a first for the Whitsters Club as it launched its charity supper, which was held to support the Worshipful Company of Launderers benevolent fund.

Twenty-three members and guests turned out for the occasion. The event raised a total of £782 from the ticket levy, donations and the highly entertaining and successful auction, which on its own raised over £350.

Chris Shepherd took the role of auctioneer and had seven lots with which to tempt the audience into generous bids. These included: a bottle of wine donated by Tim Beard; three bottles of wine given by Chris Hancock of Sunlight Services Group; drycleaning vouchers worth £50, presented by Johnson Cleaners: one year’s subscription to LCN; dinner for two and a bottle of champagne, both kindly given by the venue host, the Holiday Inn, Mayfair and £100 of Marks & Spencer vouchers donated by Chris Sander of Johnson Apparelmaster.

Chris Hancock also presented the benevolent fund with £1,001.52, transferring funds that remained in the former Sunrise Club at the time of its closure.

A second charity supper will be held in October (see p4).

The club always manages to find an interesting and slightly different venue for its special summer luncheon. This year the club visited the Royal Horticultural Society’s Gardens at Wisley, Surrey, which provided a spectacular setting, and were seen at their best thanks to the good weather.

These gardens are the flagship for the RHS. They were given to the society in 1903 and have become world class with a huge and diverse collection of plants, as well as a fruit-growing section and areas devoted to alpines, woody and herbaceous plants. This year the Wisley Gardens deservedly won a gold award for excellence from Enjoy England.

The event attracted over 50 members and guests who were treated to an excellent lunch and afterwards enjoyed an entertaining discussion as Margaret Shepherd interviewed Chris Sander of Johnson Apparelmaster.