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Ilkley's Holly Ball to end after 26 years
9:00am Friday 12th October 2012 in News
The organiser of a popular Christmas ball, which raises thousands of pounds for charity, says this year’s event will be the last after 26 years of existence.
The Holly Ball is one of the highlights of the social calendar in Ilkley and has raised more than £50,000 for various good causes since it began in the 1980s.
But organiser Fiona Mann says the current economic climate has made the event difficult to organise and she has struggled to drum up support and help.
However, she says tickets are selling well for this year and she wants the event “to go out with a bang”.
In a letter to members of a Holly Ball mailing list, Mrs Mann said: “After much careful consideration and soul-searching, it is with a tinge of sadness that I have to say that this year’s Christmas Holly Ball will definitely be the last.
“Not only am I now acutely aware that in these difficult economic times I am badgering people, but I am also no longer enjoying organising it.
“It is hard work on your own, not to mention the financial risk, and despite repeated requests nobody has come forward to help and quite frankly there are other things I want to be doing.
“I know some of you will be disappointed. ‘The show must go on’ was one comment from last year, but without sufficient support it just can’t take place. Ironically, more than 150 tickets have been sold for this year's event, but I have only three raffle prizes.
“Meanwhile, I would really like the event to go out with a bang, so if you really want to be at the last Holly Ball ever, please get in touch.”
Money raised at this year’s event will go to Help for Heroes and the British Heart Foundation.
It will take place at the Craiglands Hotel in Ilkley on Saturday, December 8, and includes a drinks reception and three-course dinner, a raffle and a disco and music from Dominic Halpin and the Honey Bs.
Ilkley-based Virtual College is the sponsor.
Call Fiona Mann on 07968 962955 to book tickets or donate raffle prizes.