A total of £350,000 was raised for Diabetes UK and the European Tour Foundation during a hugely successful fundraising drive at the 2018 BMW PGA Championship.
Diabetes UK and the European Tour Foundation – which is the tour’s charitable arm – were the Official Charities of the first Rolex Series event of the European Tour’s Race to Dubai and, thanks to an array of initiatives, more than a quarter of a million pounds will go towards those worthy causes.
Diabetes UK Ambassador Mike Rutherford was on hand at Wentworth Club for the official cheque presentation of £231,000, with the money raised going towards helping those with diabetes manage their condition, as well as funding ground-breaking research to discover new treatments for the condition.
“This is such a phenomenal amount of money raised for a cause that I really care about,” said Mike Rutherford, an Ambassador for Diabetes UK.
“To help out with the fundraising drive during the event week was a great experience for me, and I want to thank my guests Nick Mason, Roger Taylor, Tom Chaplin and The Mechanics who helped make the evening an unforgettable one.
“To know that we were able to help raise so much money makes me immensely proud.”
Chris Askew, Chief Executive of Diabetes UK, said: “Everyone at Diabetes UK is absolutely thrilled at the success of this partnership, and we’re incredibly grateful to everyone at the BMW PGA Championship for their support and commitment.
“The money raised will go directly towards our vital work, which includes campaigning for better diabetes care in Surrey; improving health outcomes and reducing amputation rates. It will also support our influencing work, enabling healthcare professionals to provide the very best care for people living with the condition.
“This partnership with the BMW PGA Championship will help us move closer still to achieving our vision of a world where diabetes does no harm. Everyone involved should fell hugely proud of what they’ve achieved together.”
Thanks to the numerous fundraising activities held at Wentworth Club during the event week, a further £119,000 was raised for the European Tour Foundation.
These funds will finance eight golfers and their coaches to travel to compete at the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Abu Dhabi in March 2019, as well as supporting charities and projects around the world.
On Tuesday May 22nd, a host of celebrity stars joined Mike Rutherford and Friends for a night of entertainment with Rutherford – a founding member of 1980s rock superstars Genesis – hosting an evening with his current band, Mike and the Mechanics, at the BMW PGA Championship Pavilion.
Fellow music legends Roger Taylor of Queen, former Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, and Keane lead singer Tom Chaplin also performed during the fundraiser which hosted sporting royalty including Manchester City Manager Pep Guardiola, legendary jockey Sir AP McCoy and English football star Alan Shearer.
Nick Rose, Head of European Tour Foundation, said: “It is incredible that we were able to raise so much money at the BMW PGA Championship for these extremely worthy causes and we are delighted to present Diabetes UK with this cheque today. We are immensely proud of what the European Tour Foundation is doing and to make such a strong start after its relaunch last year.
“It was a truly spectacular week at Wentworth Club in May and it was fantastic to see so many leading lights from the worlds of sport and entertainment, along with members of the general public, come together to support our various fundraising initiatives.”
Funds raised from the Totally Mega Putt Challenge, the Celebrity Pro-Am, the BMW Owners’ Lounge and programme sales also contributed to the staggering figure which will go towards supporting the European Tour Foundation and Diabetes UK.
The European Tour Foundation is the European Tour’s charitable arm which supports the philanthropic activities of the Tour’s players, communities in which tournaments are played, and the development of the game of golf globally.
In addition to the money raised for the European Tour Foundation and Diabetes UK, sales of Lindt chocolates during the day of the Celebrity Pro-Am were donated to the NSPCC.
Thanks to a partnership with the European Tour, Wentworth Club and Children in Need, BBC Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans raised £95,107 for Children in Need by auctioning off the Super Swing Package – a phenomenal prize which included a six-night stay at Coworth Park Hotel, a place in the Celebrity Pro-Am and a season pass for the week of the BMW PGA Championship.