Rock legend John Illsley headlines a very special "Live Lounge" in aid of the Alex Lewis Trust
On the 11th November, the Friends of the Alex Lewis Trust held a very special “Live Lounge” welcome home party for Alex Lewis and the Wild Wheelchairs expedition team in aid of the Alex Lewis Trust.
Alex, who is a quadruple amputee and the team headed up by the Wild Wheelchairs expedition founder, David Collinson, had recently returned home from their epic expedition to successfully ascend Ethiopia’s tallest mountain, Ras Dashen (4,550m). Alex and David explained how they had used a specially engineered solar powered battery assisted hand-cycle (designed by a team of Masters students from the University of Southampton) to complete part of the ascent. Guests were enthralled to hear that with incredible spirit, the team had achieved their objective and reached the top of the mountain; proving that disability does not mean inability.
Headlining the “Live Lounge” was rock legend, John Illsley (founder of Dire Straits and renowned artist) and his amazing band who played a truly memorable and magical set taking the audience through the life and times of Dire Straits. Local talent, Lucas & King, Jake Gauntlett and Darren Black completed the musical line-up.
The “Live Lounge” was compered by Jim Murray (actor and co-founder of the Murray Parish Trust and was held at the beautiful and recently restored Kimbridge Barn, near Romsey. The event was sponsored by NFU Mutual Winchester agency, 21six and The Peter Cooper Motor Group along with local businesses Hattingley Valley, Winchester Distillery and Pomp and Petals.
James Prewett from NFU Mutual Winchester agency proved once again to be an excellent auctioneer – helping to raise over £10,000 on the night. Overall, the Friends hope to raise in excess of £15,000 from the “Live Lounge”, all of which will go directly to the Alex Lewis Trust.
The “Live Lounge” was the second of three events that Nadine Collinson, Liz Trevor and Fiona Arnott (Friends of the Alex Lewis Trust) have organised in aid of the Alex Lewis Trust. The first one was held at the Hotel du Vin, Winchester in May this year and the final event will be held at Rick Stein’s Restaurant in Sandbanks in May 2020.
Liz Trevor (Friends of the Alex Lewis Trust) said “our aim is to help raise the profile of the Alex Lewis Trust so that Alex may continue his work in helping others facing life’s challenges. We have been overwhelmed with the generosity and support that we have received from local businesses, colleagues, friends and families to help make these events such a success.”
James Prewett from NFU Mutual Winchester agency and sponsor of the event said “we were so pleased to be sponsoring the Alex Lewis Trust at Kimbridge Barn. We were treated to a live lounge with John Illsley from Dire Straits who was unbelievable! It takes so much effort to make these nights happen, thank you to the Friends of the Alex Lewis Trust”.