Johnny Depp backs Dorchester fundraiser

Dorset Echo: Raffle oragniser Caleb O’Neill, right, and Durnovaria Wine Bar owner Jim Ross Raffle oragniser Caleb O’Neill, right, and Durnovaria Wine Bar owner Jim Ross

FILM fans could be in for a superstar treat after an A-lister donated to a charity raffle for ill children.

Along with signed England cricket goods and football tickets, there will be a prize from actor Johnny Depp in the draw at Durnovaria Wine Bar next Wednesday.

Organisers are hoping to raise as much as possible to help build a palliative care unit for terminally ill children at Dorset County Hospital.

All proceeds from the raffle, which will be drawn on a charity quiz night, will go to Gully’s Place Trust.

The charity works to support ill children and their families in three ways – parents’ support groups, education and learning materials for staff and families and the Gully’s Place Suite at Poole Hospital.

The charity is hoping to open a similar unit at Dorset County Hospital.

Caleb O’Neill, who is organising the event at Durnovaria Wine Bar, said: “We wanted to do something for charity and Gully’s Place stood out to us.

“It’s a campaign to get palliative care for children at Dorset County Hospital, which is really important.

“It’s run by lovely people for such a good cause and they’ve been so supportive of the event.

“We thought we would make a night of it and hopefully raise as much as we can for them in the process.”

Among the prizes on offer is barista tuition at No35 coffee house, Monkey World tickets, a Dorset Cereal hamper, Hall and Woodhouse vouchers and a signed Billy Bragg CD.

Mr O’Neill is hoping to make it an annual fundraising event.

Raffle tickets cost £2 each and are available from the bar.

Tickets for the quiz night, which will be held on December 11 from 8pm until 10pm, also cost £2 and are also available from the bar.

Pam Bell, fundraising manager for Poole Hospital said the long-term plan for Gully’s Place is to have a suite at Dorset County Hospital.

The charity does not receive NHS funding and relies completely on donations.

She added: “Events like the one planned for Dorchester really help to get people talking about Gully’s Place.

“The people who buy tickets to go to the quiz will tell their friends, and they will tell their friends, and it will help spread the word.

“This year we are hoping to raise between £50,000 and £60,000 and we need as much money as possible to provide this very important service.”

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