MORE than £20,000 was raised for children’s charity When You Wish Upon a Star thanks to a sports dinner held at the Hallmark Hotel, Wilmslow, by global advisory firm Duff & Phelps.

The company brought together business leaders from across the north west for a black-tie event, featuring footballing legend and Manchester United goalkeeper Alex Stepney and professional funny-man and Britain’s Got Talent finalist Les Gibson, to raise money for the charity.

Paul Smith, managing director of Duff & Phelps’ Manchester office, said: “When You Wish Upon a Star has transformed the lives of so many families and we are thrilled to be able to support them and their fantastic work.

“This event was an opportunity for businesses of all sizes in the north west to engage with the local community and make an important contribution to an admirable cause. We are delighted that we managed to raise in excess of £20,000, which is a transformative amount for a truly inspiring charity.”

Since 1990, When You Wish Upon a Star has helped over 17,000 sick children fulfil their dreams, from swimming with dolphins to meeting Mickey Mouse in Disney Land. The charity is heavily reliant on donations from the public and businesses from the local area, so the money raised at the event in Wilmslow will go a long way in supporting their work.

Jen Hughes, fundraiser for the charity, said: “We were delighted to be invited to work alongside Duff & Phelps at their sporting dinner last Thursday. The phenomenal amount of over £20,000 will enable the charity to grant so many more wishes for several extremely sick children, making their dream come true.

“The hard work from Duff & Phelps was evident from the start of this journey and it made a huge difference on the evening, we would like to take this opportunity to thank them for their dedication towards our Wish Children.”

The effort by the company comes on the heels of the firm’s recent launch of the Duff & Phelps Charitable Foundation, an employee-directed non-profit organisation committed to promoting volunteerism and assisting charitable organisations in achieving their goals.