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Formula One unites to raise over £500,000 for charity 06 Jul 2010

Renault Formula One car.
Great Ormond Street Hospital Grand Prix Party, Natural History Museum, London, 5 July 2010 The Sugababes (L to R): Jade Ewen (GBR), Amelle Berrabah (GBR) and Heidi Range (GBR).
Great Ormond Street Hospital Grand Prix Party, Natural History Museum, London, 5 July 2010 Force India Formula One car.
Great Ormond Street Hospital Grand Prix Party, Natural History Museum, London, 5 July 2010

Ahead of the British Grand Prix Formula One racing’s great and good traditionally come together for an annual party held in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity. This year’s event took place at London’s Natural History Museum on Monday night, and with such a breathtaking venue and priceless charity auction lots on offer, the guests were more than willing to put their hands in their pockets for a worthy cause.

Now in its sixth year, the official F1™ Party celebrates the official launch of this weekend’s Silverstone race, whilst simultaneously raising funds for the London hospital's new heart and lung centre. The event is hosted by Bernie Ecclestone, CEO of the Formula One Group, and supported by Santander, title sponsor of the 2010 FORMULA 1 SANTANDER BRITISH GRAND PRIX.

“We have brought together the Formula One community to forge a unique partnership with Great Ormond Street Hospital, which has developed over many years now,” said Ecclestone. “I am delighted to be able to lend my support to such a great cause.”

With a 2006 BMW Sauber Formula One car, a limited edition Gold & Tantalum Hublot Aerobang watch, and a week’s work experience at Mercedes GP just some of the ‘once in a lifetime’ lots up for grabs in the charity auction, it’s no surprise that the bidding, expertly handled by auctioneer Charlie Ross, was fast and furious. In total over £500,000 was raised on the night.

In terms of guests, the party proved to be as big a draw as ever with celebrities from entertainment, sport and show business packing into the museum. TV presenters - and hospital patrons - Tess Daly and Vernon Kay were in attendance, alongside Princess Beatrice, the party’s creative director Tamara Ecclestone and her sister Petra, Holly and Sam Branson, comedian Hardeep Singh Kohliand, TV stars Fiona Bruce, Gabby Logan, Tina Hobley and Kirsty Gallacher, actor Tom Chambers and DJ Henry Holland. And then there was the star act of the evening - chart-topping pop trio The Sugababes, who thrilled the assembled guests with an exciting set. Guests from the world of Formula One included Red Bull team principal Christian Horner, BMW Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi and Renault team principal Eric Boullier.

All in all, the night showed Formula One’s enduring support for Great Ormond Street Hospital. In addition many of the hospital’s patients are expected to attend this weekend’s race and meet their Formula One heroes in person.