Posted by Sandra on February 27 2012

SIMON Cowell hosted an event for Guildford-based charity Shooting Star CHASE, raising £110,000.

The Valentine afternoon tea was held at The Dorchester in London and was attended by the likes of boy band McFly, television presenter Phillip Schofield, talent show judge Louis Walsh and musician and vice president of the charity, Tony Hadley.

The celebrities spent Tuesday afternoon meeting and chatting to children and families who are supported by the charity.

“I am thrilled to say that we raised an incredible £110,000 from our special Valentine tea,” said Karen Sugarman, director of specialist fundraising at the charity.

“I want to say the hugest thank you to our hosts, Simon Cowell and Max Clifford.

“Without them, today would not have been possible,” she added. “The families from Shooting Star CHASE had the most incredible day.

“I also want to thank the many celebrities and VIP guests for their continued support, as well as our friends at The Dorchester for donating all the food and drink, which was especially created for this special occasion.”

Mr Cowell was introduced to the charity by the event’s co-host and CHASE patron, Max Clifford.

“I first visited their Guildford hospice, Christopher’s, seven to eight years ago and had a great day,” said Mr Cowell. “You expect it to be sad but it’s not. It is a really happy place with lots of hope and hope changes everything.

“I met one of the children at the time and we have been in touch since. She will often text me and say I have had a great day at Shooting Star CHASE today and that just puts everything into perspective.

“The people involved in this charity are incredible and I have got to know some of them as the years have gone on.

“It’s really important to have places like Shooting Star CHASE to offer vital children’s hospice services.”

Speaking on Tuesday, Mr Clifford said: “It was great to see the children, their brothers and sisters have such a brilliant time.

“The charity only receives around 7% in government funding but needs to raise £8.5 million a year,” he added. “We hope today will encourage as many people as possible to get involved and support Shooting Star CHASE in whatever way they can.”

The afternoon included an auction with tickets to a Westlife concert, donated by Mr Walsh, X Factor tickets donated by Mr Cowell and tickets to see McFly.

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