More than £1,000 raised by big lunch event in Bushey

Watford Observer: Left to right: Sarah Sullivan (DRUM Manager), Roshini Melwani (Halifax Eastcote Branch Manager & Organiser) Wendy Copper (Halifax Local Director) & Connie Sullivan (DRUM) Left to right: Sarah Sullivan (DRUM Manager), Roshini Melwani (Halifax Eastcote Branch Manager & Organiser) Wendy Copper (Halifax Local Director) & Connie Sullivan (DRUM)

More than 400 people attended a lunch in Bushey at the weekend raising more than £1,000 for charity.

The Halifax Big Lunch took place across the UK on Sunday, and one event was held at Queens’ School in Aldenham Road.

The Alice in Wonderland Mad Hatter’s Tea themed event was organised by Roshini Melwani.

She said: "Overall I would say it was a huge success and I think it was probably the best thing I have ever done in my career.

"One of the local charities donated lots of their props from an exhibition.

"So we had all sorts of crazy decorations and people dressed up in costumes.

"Everyone was so involved and our branch manager John Taylor dressed up as the Mad Hatter and no one recognised him.

"He was so into it and people were talking to him without realising it was their colleague."

More than £1,000 was raised on the day, which will be matched by the bank. The money will go towards the banks four chosen charities, Rays of Sunshine, The Watford Shelter, Saint Lukes Hospice, and Disability Recreation Unity Movement.

Activities at the event included games on the lawn, a fancy dress costume competition, food donated by local branches of M&S and Costco and a performance by the Chalfont Wind Band.

Miss Melwani continued: "I spoke to the local fire station and they agreed to come down and so they drove down in the fire truck.

"So the kids got the chance to ride in the truck and they brought uniforms down and so we had toddlers running around in fireman outfits which was so adorable."

The Big Lunch is a one-day get-together for neighbours, an idea from the Eden Project made possible by the Big Lottery Fund.

On Sunday an estimated four million communities across the UK sit down for a Big Lunch as part of partner Halifax’s Helping Britain Prosper Plan.

Halifax made available 10,000 free Big Lunch boxes containing colourful themed balloons, bunting, table cloths, plates and cups on the day.

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