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Celebrity ‘doodle’ auction raises £7,000 in Weymouth
YOUNG people in Weymouth are thrilled with the success of a celebrity ‘doodle’ auction which has raised more than £7,000.
Members of Steps youth centre organised the event to help fund activities when their new facility in Chickerell Road opens this spring.
They wrote to 1,000 assorted celebrities asking them to ‘doodle a poodle’, do a self-portrait or anything else they felt like.
A total of 175 items were returned with contributions from the world of sport, music, film, children’s books and television.
The items were auctioned online on eBay over an eight-week period.
There were some surprises during the sale – a mini post-it note with a sketch of a figure by renowned sculptor Antony Gormley went for more than £450, almost breaking a world record.
It was bought by the daughter of a sculptor who worked with Henry Moore, who Mr Gormley is a big fan of. In all, the auction raised £7,430.
One of the organisers, 19-year-old Hazel Pritchard, said: “Our best selling item was a lovely self-portrait by Paul Weller which sold for £747.
“The majority of items sold for between £10 and £50 but that all helped us to reach this fabulous total.”
Fellow organiser Steph Chung, 17, said: “The auction was really exciting with flurries of last-minute bidding.
“We sold items to people all over the world including America, Japan, Italy, France and Australia.
“However, we had lots of local followers and we’re really grateful to everyone who supported us by bidding for items.”
Area youth worker Tom Lane said fundraising efforts to support the new youth centre had increased.
He said: “The myplace funding is creating a fabulous new youth facility at Steps, which will open in April, as well as the improvements which have taken place at Weymouth Outdoor Education Centre.
“However, the funding is for capital costs and we’re now raising money to provide an outstanding range of activities, opportunities and support for young people eleven hours a day, seven days a week.”
Mr Lane added: “The auction has been supported by four local businesses. Thanks to the generous sponsorship of Londis, The Windowman, Daniels Fish & Chips and Sherrens Printers, all the proceeds from the auction will go towards local youngsters.”