I would like to start my 17th Hon Treasurers report by thanking all members of the fund for their continued and unstinting work raising funds in a very difficult and challenging financial times not only for the cab trade but also their own time.
As usual our first function of the year was the famous Mad Hatters party at the Grosvenor House where we entertained over 500 special needs children with a fun packed day of entertainment, face painting, dancing and finishing up with a bag full of goodies from our toy grotto. This event cost over £7000 which was slightly less than last year.
Our next big event was a milestone in the Funds 90 years. We celebrated with a fantastic night at the Grand Connaught Rooms in Great Queen Street. This event was not meant to be a fundraiser but a great celebration of the work that the Fund and the cab trade has given to thousands of special needs and disadvantaged children since 1928. A very special thanks goes to Terry Higgins for his magnificent donation on behalf of his golf club.
Our main outing to Southend was as usual a great success taking over three hundred children for a fun packed day to the seaside. For many it was the first time they had been in a London Taxi and seen the sea and the excitement was evident by the screams of “look I can see the sea” This event cost in excess of £13,000, a price well worth paying when you see and hear the children going on all the rides in the Adventure playground. Thanks to the hard work of Steve Bell, our sponsorship officer and Wendy, his wife, this event was covered by the money they raised in sponsorship.
Apart from our outings we also donate to many organisations who come to us for help. This year was no exception. To mark this very special year an appeal came in from Corams Fields Play centre who needed a new playground. We felt that this was the ideal appeal to remember Bill Tyzack who I have worked with on the fund since 1966. Colin Greaves our appeals officer did all the negotiations and arranged for a brand new playground for the children and Bills daughter Belinda did the official opening together with the Mayor of Camden. A fitting memorial to a well liked and respected member of the fund and also a great ambassador for the taxi trade.
Other appeals that were granted were for a special tricycle for a young disabled child, art supplies for a group of special needs children, and many other smaller donations which came to over £21,000.
At this point I would like to pass on our thanks to the many sponsors who help us throughout the year. A special thanks to Russell Poluck and the Taxi Driver of the Year Charity Fund for their generous donations. Also, to the many garages and eating establishment that carry our collecting boxes. Without their support we could not do half the things we do. Also, many thanks to our long supporting friends at Tin Plate Workers Alias Wire Workers and not forgetting Sainsburys of Low Hall Chingford for their continuing help not only at the start of our Southend outing but also their considerable help at the Mad Hatters Party.
Finally I am delighted to finish on a great note. Over the years that records can be found the Fund has raised over one point six million pounds, yes £1,650,000, and have given away by way of grants and outings over £1,457,000. We are extremely proud of the fact that our running cost are just over 2.5% which I believe are the lowest of any registered charity. This is due to the fact that no member of the committee receives any remuneration whatsoever.
Finally I would like to thank the Chairman and all the committee for their help and assistance during the last year.
Gerry Dunn MBE