Chester's Mad Hatter's Ball in October set to raise money for two spinal injury charities | Knutsford Times

Chester’s Mad Hatter’s Ball in October set to raise money for two spinal injury charities

By on September 24, 2018

Music lovers and party-goers across Cheshire, Manchester, Shropshire, North Wales and Wirral are urged to dress up and party on down while helping to raise funds for two spinal injury charities at Chester’s Mad Hatter’s Ball on Saturday 13 October.

The ball, starting at 7pm and ending at 1am, will be held in Chester’s stunning ‘gothic’ Town Hall. It is a black tie event but party-goers are encouraged to embrace the Mad Hatter theme. Like the previous flamboyant Moulin Rouge Ball in 2016, the event is open to all and guests can expect the unexpected. Tickets cost £55 per ticket with tables of 10 receiving a £5 discount per person. Reduced price tickets (£36) are available for 16-21 year olds. Tickets can be bought directly from or via

Tickets include a welcome drink, three-course dinner, live music, raffle, silent auction plus more events on the night. The now bi annual ball is the brainchild of Chester mum and Marketing Cheshire Events Manager, Leonie Hallam, whose son Mathew* suffered devastating injuries after being hit by a car in late 2014. Mathew received life-changing injuries and is paralysed from the chest down.

Proceeds from the ball are divided between the Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation (NSIF), a charity that focuses on research into spinal injuries, and The Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries (RJAH) in Gobowen, Oswestry, where Mathew was treated.

Leonie Hallam, from Waverton, Chester, said: “Anyone who enjoys a great night out together with delicious food, brilliant live music and lots of dancing will love this spectacular black-tie event. Maybe it will be the excuse to meet up to celebrate a birthday or just get together with friends. Whatever the reason, it promises to be a great night out. Though the dress code is black tie, we welcome anyone who wants to embrace the ‘Mad Hatter’ theme. This is about celebrating life and having fun while raising much-needed cash for two great causes.”

Katrina Michel, CEO of Marketing Cheshire, said: “Leonie is a professional event organiser with years of experience. She has flair and style and this ball promises to be as exciting as her last, where personal video messages were broadcasted to the audience from Star Trek actor Simon Pegg and Joseph Fiennes of The Handmaid’s Tale. Leonie is keeping her cards close to her chest for The Mad Hatter’s Ball, but I know guests can expect the unexpected.”

Mary Watkins, Specialist Psychological Rehabilitation Practitioner, Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries (based in Oswestry) said: “I was fortunate to attend the Moulin Rouge Ball held last year. It was one of the best organised functions that I have been privileged to attend for a long time, the attention to detail was not left to chance. Individuals had embraced the ‘Moulin Rouge’ theme with some brilliant costumes on show, which added to the overall fun of the evening. If last year’s Ball is anything to go by anyone attending is in for a real treat at the ‘Mad Hatters’ Ball this year”.

Mike Milner, CEO of the Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation (based in Stoke) said: “I was delighted to attend the Moulin Rouge Ball in 2016 which was great fun and full of entertainment. We are extremely honoured to have Leonie as a supporter of the charity and are grateful that she hosts these fantastic events to raise money and spread awareness about spinal cord injury. The money raised goes towards funding ground-breaking research, in the hope that paralysis from spinal cord injury will some day be a thing of the past.”

About Lucy Thorpe

Lucy Thorpe is a freelance journalist who writes for the Knutsford Times - covering stories and news in and around Cheshire and Greater Manchester. If you've got a story to share, or would like to speak to Lucy, please email

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