Geoff spreads the word so everyone can go to the ball

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Latest community news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

A charity fundraiser is setting his sights on raising thousands of pounds to help patients and their families facing transplants.

Geoff Bennet is organising a charity ball - called The Lavender Ball - at the Stoke by Nayland Golf Club and Spa on June 13.

The money raised will be split between the renal transplant units at Ipswich Hospital and Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

Mr Bennet, a retired national journalist, was given a kidney transplant ten years ago.

He suffered end-stage renal failure and an auto immune disorder.

After his transplant, he said thought about ways in which he could say thank you and he came up with the fundraising idea to open hospital a room where families of transplant families can stay when necessary.

The room is now open at Addenbrooke’s and is providing valuable respite for patient’s families, many of whom have to travel long distances but now have a place to stay at hospital to be close to their loved one.

Money raised from this year’s ball will go towards the running costs of the room in Addenbrooke’s, as well as towards the renal unit at Ipswich Hospital.

Mr Bennet, who lives in Melford Road, Sudbury, said last year’s ball at Ickworth House raised £4,5000, and he hopes this year’s event will do just as well.

He has managed to secure the services of TV’s Flog It auctioneer David Palmer to run the fundraising auction. And Chaplain to the Queen, Canon Ann Easter, who attended last year’s ball, will be the guest speaker.

Anyone interested in supporting the ball on June 13 by buying a ticket, can contact Mr Bennett on 01787 311797.