“In late August I decided to hold a barn dance in aid of Epilepsy Research UK; our daughter Heather had just suffered another seizure. She has mild epilepsy and with medication leads a perfectly normal lifestyle, but every now and then a seizure occurs which upsets the equilibrium of her family life. She is a busy mother with a husband and 3 growing children.

My husband and I have raised monies for charities in the past, but this time it was to be for this relatively low profile charity, which means so much to us personally.

We booked a barn dance band, a venue, and then went to France for a month. We returned at the end of September to realise that only 2 people had signed up for the event! I panicked and wanted to cancel but all our fantastic family and friends rallied and within 3 weeks the event was well and truly ‘on’. As it was Halloween, some of the guests came in ghoulish fancy dress, others in the charity’s green colour. We asked each couple to bring a raffle prize, thus enabling us to raise an unexpected £900!

In November we held our annual charity Ball with some friends, and half of the proceeds went to ERUK. The grand total raised for both events was £2,035. A little bonus to it all was that our daughter was seated on the same table at the Ball as a researcher for ERUK, making the raising of the monies very real for both of them.”