A CELEBRITY auction to help Weymouth youngsters raised almost £1,000 in its first week.
Stars of stage and screen are boosting the coffers of Steps Club for Young People with their sketches which are being sold on the internet auction site eBay in the run-up to Christmas.
Doctor Who star David Tennant has proved to be the biggest seller so far with an American fan paying £311 for his sketch of K9, the robotic dog from the TV series.
There’s still more time to bid for doodles as organisers are saving some of the best for last.
And they say buyers don’t necessarily have to fork out hundreds of pounds.
Money from the sale will fund a programme of activities when the new Steps building opens next spring. This includes subsidising sports and outdoor pursuits at Weymouth Outdoor Education Centre.
The auction was organised by the Steps’ Youth Achievement Award group. Young people wrote hundreds of letters to celebrities asking them to ‘doodle a poodle’ or for any other contribution.
Around 15-20 items including sketches, self-portraits and signed photos are being sold every week, each with a starting price of 99p.
The auction has been supported by businesses which covered costs – The Windowman, Daniel’s Fish & Chips, Abbotsbury Road Londis and Sherrens Printers.
Area Youth Worker Tom Lane said: “We’ve had a great first week with our first 17 items raising £906.
“Our bestsellers so far have been sketches by David Tennant which went for £311, Bear Grylls for £98 and Hugh Bonneville for £79.
“We’re getting more interest as the weeks go on.”
Items being sold this week include contributions from Doctor Who stars Tom Baker and Matt Smith, actors Emma Thompson and Kenneth Branagh, and a drawing from ex-England goalkeeper David James who is also a talented illustrator.
Star lots still to come include drawings from John Travolta, Cliff Richard, Donald Trump, the Duchess of York and Princess Eugenie – and a brilliant picture from actor Peter Capaldi from his time in the West End play The Ladykillers.
To find the items on eBay visit http://myworld.ebay.co.uk/stepsclubforyoungpeople For updates and more information see the Facebook page Steps Celebrity Doodle Auction