29 June 2011
At The Henley Event held on Saturday 25th June, at which some 300 people were present, Philip Dunne MP announced that in addition to the £27,000 raised through the Auction of Promises, and donations totalling £3,000, an anonymous benefactor had pledged another £50,000 over five years as a direct result of the event.

Paula Redway, Director of LAR, prior th event had secured, conditionally, a further £70,000 from the residual body of Advantage West Midlands, on the basis that The Henley Event would raise a minimum of £25,000.

The Henley Event was held on the basis that all monies raised at the event would be ringfenced for capital refurbishment.

LAR’s Shopping List

Top of Ludlow Assembly Rooms’ shopping list is a digital projector costing £70,000. This will allow the screening of latest technology films and live-stream national events, with the potential to increase annual revenues by £30,000.

Philip Dunne MP, Event Patron, announced in a rousing speech on the evening that he had secured the first £21,000 towards this from the UK Film Council. Another £14,000 has been raised through the Assembly Rooms’ own fundraising.

Mr Dunne said: "The Henley Event was a spectacular success. It was a very special evening, beautifully organised by the Lumsden family and their committee. Thanks to the hard work of the Assembly Rooms team themselves and the remarkable generosity of guests, including sponsors, donors and those who bid for auction items, a truly phenomenal sum of £150,000 has been secured."

Susanne Lumsden who organised The Henley Event said: "A special thanks to all those who so generously supported the event, in particular to HRH The Prince of Wales whose lithograph was a highlight of the auction. I am delighted that it all went so well and we have raised so much to help maintain Ludlow Assembly Rooms, so important for all the arts in the Ludlow area."

Paula Redway, Director of the LAR added her thanks today: "I want to thank all involved for making The Henley Event such a remarkable evening. It was a great success in raising so much on the night which enables us to access residual funds from AWM for capital improvements."

Items on LAR's wish list include:

  • Replacing lights in the foyer (£18,000) – for greater energy efficiency to save £8,000 in electricity a year

  • Refurbishment of catering areas (£100,000) - with the potential to increase revenue by up to £30,000 per year

  • Refurbishment of the box office (£12,000) – estimated to increase sales by £10,000 a year

  • Refurbishment of the hiring rooms (£35,000) – estimated to raise hiring revenue by £10,000 per year

The Food

The menu, with Wayne Smith the chef from Dinham Hall in situ on the night was:

- Chilled summer vegetable consommé,
- Pressing of Gloucester Old Spot Ham Hock & Foie Gras & peas pudding
- Breast of Guinea Fowl, Morel Mushrooms, Sauce Vin Jaune, Summer Vegetables
- Vanilla Pannacotta, Elderflower Jelly with English Strawberries

Also present were many of the event’s sponsors from Ludlow to Shrewsbury - Balfours, The Green Cafe, the Ludlow Food Centre and Tanners – and practices such as The Station Road Surgery and Balfours.

And in case your wine waiter looked familiar...

New local supporters on the evening included the builders from Hurst Construction, who provided wine waiters for the night as well as members of the Ludlow Rugby Club, and Travis Perkins, who provided bins – and even a pink wheelbarrow – for free. Ludlow Assembly Room volunteers provided ticket and cloakroom staff and outdoor help.