An Interview with Virginia McKenna

The Golden Willow Restaurant was again the scene for our latest fund-raising evening on March 4th where we all enjoyed "An evening with Virginia McKenna", hosted by Alexandra Bastedo. Beginning at 7.30pm, we were given a little peek into the lives of both personalities as they talked about people they both knew from their earlier acting careers - Donald Sutherland and Kirk Douglas got a mention - and a little about their experiences in the film and theatre world. Virginia told us about her meeting with Bill Travers - who later became her husband - and the challenges faced by the film crew when making the film 'Born Free', and how that led on to an amazing life devoted in such a large part to the rescuing of all types of animals at risk in countries across the world. Founder of 'Zoo Check' and the 'Born Free Foundation', her experiences -together with those of Alexandra - painted a fascinating picture of the dedication, patience and the diplomacy necessary to raise the standard of global animal care and protection. Interspersed through the talk were poems read by Virginia and Alexandra, many written by Virginia.

All too soon the talk came to an end, leaving us wishing to learn more about the extraordinary life that Virginia has led and leaving us a little more knowledgeable about the work that still remains to be done around the world for the protection of animals.

After dinner, an appeal was launched for funds towards the cost of relocating stables to the Sanctuary that we have been generously given by one of our supporters. A 'Dragon's Den' theme was introduced, and a 'special guest' with huge experience in the art of 'giving' was given the task of encouraging donations (see if you can spot him in the photos below!) Supporters were very generous and we managed to reach our target without any 'arm-twisting', so a huge THANK YOU to all those who donated. Also our thanks go to the Golden Willow management for their continuous support.

We finished the night with a raffle, which offered the opportunity to take home a very nice prize if you were lucky enough for your number to be called. Books were available to be bought and signed by the author, Virginia McKenna along with 2013 calendars of Alexandra.

Everyone left praising the evening and voted it a huge success. We are considering holding another similar evening in about two months time so keep checking the website and your emails for details.   

VM&AB Reading   VM&AB_room a
 VM&AB  Santa_Golden Willow
 Table decoration fish  Table decoration Dragon



Virginia & Alexandra presented with flowers by the Management of the Golden Willow