Fundraisers With A Head For Heights Take The Plunge For Armed Forces Charity

Lawyers Join Forces For Tea And Tarts Party Challenge


By Suzanne Rutter

Lawyers from a leading law firm joined forces with a national charity Blind Veterans UK to host a tea party with a difference to raise money for the charity’s specialist rehabilitation centre in Sheffield which helps ex-Servicemen and women suffering from blindness and visual impairments.

Irwin Mitchell’s armed forces team swapped their work canteen for a more unusual spot as they enjoyed a special tea party on the 10-metre diving board at the Sheffield International Venues - run Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield to raise money for armed forces charity Blind Veterans UK as it launches its Tarts for Troops fundraising campaign.

The Tarts for Troops Extreme Tea Party was aimed at raising funds for Blind Veterans UK, which used to be called St Dunstan’s and helps provide practical and emotional support to ex-Servicemen, regardless of when people served or how they lost their sight.

Gaye Atkin, IT Instructor at Blind Veterans UK’s Sheffield Centre, based at Fulwood Road, attended the event where Irwin Mitchell trainee solicitor Richard Shawcross also made a splash diving into the pool.

Andrew Buckham, an associate solicitor at Irwin Mitchell’s Sheffield office, said: “Many of our clients at Irwin Mitchell have suffered terrible injuries while serving in the armed forces and we work closely with fantastic charities like Blind Veterans UK. Our Tarts for Troops event was a great opportunity for us to think of a creative way of raising money for a charity which is close to all our hearts in Sheffield and we had a great time enjoying our tea break teetering over the edge of the pool at Ponds.

“Thanks to everyone that joined us for a cuppa and a tart, please keep sending us your generous donations for the charity. We hope that our event will highlight the fantastic work Blind Veterans UK that does for ex-Servicemen and women who are suffering from blindness or visual impairments and how important specialist rehabilitation centres like the one in Sheffield are to help come to terms with their injuries.”

Blind Veterans UK’s Sheffield centre, which was opened by the charity in 2005, provides specialist training rooms and tailored rehabilitation courses as well as the opportunity for residents to boost their IT, communication mobility and independent living skills.

Since it was opened, thousands of people have benefitted from its services although fundraising is essential to help with the £600,000 a year running costs.

A whole host of celebrities have shown support for the campaign by providing tart recipes, such as Gregg Wallace, Gordon Ramsay and Lorraine Pascale.

The Tarts for Troops campaign asks people to bake tarts and hold tea parties to help raise funds for its vital work.

Irwin Mitchell’s Tarts For Troops party follows previous support for Blind Veterans UK, including sponsorship of the charity’s 100K London to Brighton walk. The firm has also provided the charity with meeting spaces and bespoke training for its welfare team and helped redecorate the Sheffield centre’s IT suite.

Terry Heaton, Sheffield centre manager at Blind Veterans UK, said: “We were delighted that Irwin Mitchell organised this fantastic event in celebration of Tarts for Troops, Blind Veterans UK’s annual fundraising campaign. The event was a lot of fun and showed how much money and awareness about the charity’s life-changing work can be achieved when enthusiastic fundraisers put their creative minds to the test.”

Read more information about Irwin Mitchell’s work in the community.