Barnardo’s to rival Britain’s Got Talent at fun Barkingside charity night

PUBLISHED: 15:30 22 February 2017

From left, Matthew Todd and Karl Todd.

From left, Matthew Todd and Karl Todd.

Dan Hodges/Barnardos

Staff from a national charity aim to show off their talents at a fun night to the sounds of pop and rock classics.

Held at The Chequers pub, High Street, Barkingside, the Barnardo’s Got Talent fundraiser returns on March 2, to add to the thousands already raised.

In just 12 months the pub team has held regular events including sing-along nights, all-day band sessions, quiz nights and even a murder mystery to raise nearly £6,000.

Bar manager, Karl Todd, 30, who caught the fundraising bug from girlfriend Lucy Clements, who works for the children’s charity said: “I met Lucy at a staff party just over a year ago, and our passion for fundraising brought us together.

“Two days after we met we were shaking tins and collecting money for Barnardo’s.

“It makes sense, being so close to the charity and in the same place that Thomas Barnardo was operating all those years ago, to do everything we can to show our support.”

Matthew Todd, 38, director of Opus Bars’ which owns the pub has also gone to extreme lengths to raise cash for the charity.

He braved heavy fog to climb the three highest mountains in the Lake District over the course of a continuous three-day hike and raised £623 in the process.

“It nearly broke me,” he said.

“There was one point when I was climbing up Helvellyn on the second day while it was getting dark and I thought I couldn’t make it until my friend Tom, who was walking with me, told me we were camping by the next fence.”

Opus Bars took over managing the pub a year ago.

The charity’s London director, Lynn Gradwell added: “The Chequers team have done an incredible job of fundraising over the last year.

“They’ve really pulled out all the stops and are a real asset to Barnardo’s and the Barkingside community.

“I’d like them to thank them for everything they’ve done and wish them ongoing success for 2017.”

Matthew continued: “The support that we’ve received from Barnardo’s staff since we opened has been fantastic, so it was always going to be our charity of choice.”

All are welcome to the Barnardo’s Got Talent 2 event which runs from 6.30pm to 9.30pm.

Cash raised will go towards helping to transforming the lives of disadvantaged children.

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