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Drivers and a host of celebrities party for charity in London 05 Jul 2007

Heikki Kovalainen at Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity's Official F1 Party, ahead of the 2007 FORMULA 1™ Santander British Grand Prix. © Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity. Lewis Hamilton and Thandie Newton at Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity's Official F1 Party, ahead of the 2007 FORMULA 1™ Santander British Grand Prix. © Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity.

Ahead of this weekend’s British Grand Prix, the great and the good of the Formula One paddock joined forces with a crop of glamorous celebrities in London on Wednesday night for the official F1 party.

The annual charity event, hosted with the kind permission of Bernie Ecclestone, raised vital funds for Great Ormond Street Hospital’s planned Heart and Lung Centre.

Amongst the VIP guests were some familiar faces from the racing fraternity including McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton and Ron Dennis, while from Renault, team boss Flavio Briatore and driver Heikki Kovalainen were in attendance. Celebrities included the charity’s patrons Tess Daly and Vernon Kay, as well as film stars Rupert Everett and Thandie Newton, Olympic athlete Denise Lewis and impressionist Jon Culshaw.

During the evening the assembled glitterati were treated to food designed by top chef Gordon Ramsay and danced the night away to music courtesy of DJ Michael Adam and Jamie Scott and The Town.

The evening’s highlight was undoubtedly the charity auction of money-can’t-buy lots. Attendees bid on diverse items including a lap in a two-seater Formula One car driven by former world champion Damon Hill, before the start of Sunday’s British race, and the chance to become a member of the Spyker team pit crew for the day.

The Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity is Mr Ecclestone’s official charity for the British Grand Prix and many of the hospital’s patients have been invited to enjoy the race from the paddock on Sunday.