The visual spectacle that is Battersea Dogs & Cats Home’s once again wowed the world on 15 November with the return of the Collars & Coats Gala Ball at the iconic Battersea Evolution in London. Celebrating its seventh successful year, the high-profile event is a highlight of the autumn social calendar, and is consistently regarded as one of the most unique and eagerly anticipated charity events.
The annual charity extravaganza saw a host of UK and international stars take to the red carpet for this worthwhile cause to raise vital funds for Battersea Dogs & Cats Home’s work in rescuing and re-homing abandoned dogs. This year’s star line-up, from the world of TV, music, film, sport and fashion, included: Battersea Ambassador Dame Jacqueline Wilson, Hilary Devey, Craig Revel-Horwood, Anthony Head, Nicky Clarke, Kelly Simpkin, Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne Pinnock, Dr Christian Jessen, Rosie Marcel, Sue Barker, photographer Rankin, and Debbie Sledge of the iconic music group Sister Sledge.
The theme of the event this year was ‘Transformation’ to celebrate Battersea’s ability to transform dog’s lives, whilst its London site itself transforms with the construction of new facilities for its animals. Making a very welcome return was the popular ‘Battersea Doggie Guard Of Honour’ – a red-carpet parade of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home’s pooches.
Other highlights of this year’s event included an eclectic performance by music legend and Roxy Music frontman Bryan Ferry as well as a performance by classical cross-over singer Camilla Kerslake. Battersea ambassadors and supporters including Dr Christian Jessen, Anthony Head and Dame Jacqueline Wilson united on stage to highlight the work and achievements of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home. High profile guests and celebrities also enjoyed the opportunity to bid for an array of money can’t buy experiences at the event’s exclusive auction.
Battersea Ambassador Dame Jacqueline Wilson said, “I am so proud to be an Ambassador for Battersea. It is a lovely charity where every penny is accounted for and you can see for yourself the wonderful work they do.”
Sports personality and TV presenter Sue Barker said, “I love Battersea. It’s a great charity. They do so much great work helping lots of dogs and cats”.
Actor Anthony Head said, “I absolutely love Battersea and this is a fantastic event. It’s a wonderful atmosphere and Battersea always seems like a family every time I’m back”.
Debbie Sledge of the iconic music group Sister Sledge said, “It’s been an absolute pleasure being a part of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home’s annual fundraiser. Their work in transforming the lives of abandoned dogs is incredible.”
Speaking about the return of the gala, Claire Horton, Battersea’s Chief Executive said: “The Collars & Coats Gala Ball was a truly unique event, celebrating our animals and raising money to care for the 9,000 dogs and cats that come through our gates, abandoned and terrified each year. Once again, we’re thrilled that so many supporters and friends of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home gave so generously of their time to make the event so successful.’’
This year’s Collars & Coats Gala Ball was proudly sponsored by Henry Wiltshire International, a leading estate agent in London who works across local, national and international markets delivering unrivalled customer service through the commitment of its team. With two offices in London (Nine Elms and Canary Wharf) Henry Wiltshire International provide expert Sales, Lettings and Property Management services both locally and to their international clientele through their offices based in Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong and Singapore. Speaking about the partnership with the Home, Kelly Gallagher, Director of Henry Wiltshire International said: ‘It was a pleasure for Henry Wiltshire International to support such a worthwhile and important event and help raise money for a fantastic cause.’
The Collars & Coats VIP area, an exclusive area for VIPs and celebrity guests was sponsored by Battersea Power Station Development Company. They said: ‘On behalf of the Battersea Power Station shareholders, Battersea Power Station Development Company was delighted to support our neighbour with this incredible charity event.’
It costs Battersea over £10m to care for its dogs and cats every year, and with no government funding, the Collars & Coats Gala Ball is all about helping to increase awareness of the important work the charity does each and every day of the year to offer a second chance in life to thousands of animals. Last year nearly 9,000 dogs and cats needed Battersea’s care and attention to help find them the best possible new homes.
For further information on Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and to pledge donations, please visit www.battersea.org.uk or call 0207 627 7883.