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Jack's Belles Fundraising Events

Jack's Belles Ladies Lunch November 2015

Wow! The glamorous ladies that is Jack's Belles, have once again risen to the occasion and raised an amazing £6,500 for the Muir Maxwell Trust – thank you so much.

My good friend Rose Marie and I had such a wonderful time and enjoyed every minute, from the warm welcome we received on arrival through the entertaining afternoon and the outstanding Brothers of Swing.

Every year you surpass yourselves and both Rose Marie and I felt so very honoured to be part of this very special day.



















Jack's Belles do the Blackpool 10k - 2015

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Jack's Belles are at it again with their phenomenal support for MMT. The 'elite team', that is Jack's Belles, ran the Blackpool 10k for MMT wearing our T shirts & sporting Caley Cupcake on their backs, the face of our Charity Cupcake Challenge.

Well done team Jack's Belles and thank you so much for your continued support.


Jack's Belles Ladies Lunch November 2014

We just love ladies who lunch for MMT and Jack's Belles always do this with such style. That said, this year's Jack's Belles Ladies Lunch attended by 180 glamorous ladies in Lytham St Anne's on Saturday 29th November at the Grand Hotel, will be a hard one to beat. 

As guest of honour, along with my very close friend Catriona Thomson, we enjoyed a fabulous lunch of pea and mint soup, followed by roast chicken and concluded with the most chocolatey pudding I have ever tasted. We were entertained by compere and Jack's Belle, Helen Dentith- Adams whose endless wit and repartee had us in fits of side splitting laughter - this girl should really be a professional comedienne! 

The raffle and the auction were very lively with additional party games in between to raise funds for the Trust - note the picture of me in the picture gallery with hands on posterior for the game of Heads and Tails which I didn't win! There was a long queue to enter a draw to win afternoon tea at the Clifton Arms Hotel in Lytham . Every opportunity these ladies were given to support the Trust was embraced in full and we are so grateful. 

The room decor was stunning with red voile bows round every chair and a mix of silver sparkly trees and beautiful red poinsettias as a centre pieces on every table. There was wonderful attention to detail with hand made ginger bread men in every place setting, each one tied with a personalised label from the Belles and dangling from the silver sparkly trees were hand made stars imprinted with the year 2014 to mark the occasion of the sixth Jack's Belles Ladies Lunch. 

My huge thanks to Catriona Thomson who volunteered to speak on behalf of the Trust this year. She brought my son Muir and Catherine's son Jack Bell together, both sufferers of Dravet Syndrome, in the theme of girlfriends who provide support to their friends who are mothers struggling to cope with their child's epilepsy. Jack's Belles have watched over Catherine who copes with Jack. Catriona has watched over me and Muir. It was a heartfelt and emotional speech that touched us all. 

The highlight of the night however was most definitely the Brothers of Swing, two handsome young men who serenaded us with some golden oldies and other well known hit singles from a by - gone era, singing in perfect harmony and energising the room to the point that these elegant  ladies who lunch were dancing on their chairs with red voile ribbons. 

A good time was most definitely had by all and £5000 was raised for the cause. 

A heartfelt thanks to all.

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Jack's Belles Fundraising Ball May 2013

Yes, we truly had a ball on Saturday night at the Imperial Hotel in Blackpool. With Oompa Loompas and Willy Wonka himself welcoming guests through the Chocolate Factory gates as the bells chimed and the clock struck ten. The Wonka walking stick struck the ground and the small sized, orange complexioned Oompa Loompas surprised us with a fantastic break dancing routine. Tables were littered with goodies of the sweetie kind, including traditional Blackpool rock, not to mention a bit of perfume for the girls and a tipple for their guys.

The Bell of the ball was of course Catherine, mother of 6 year old Jack who has Dravet Syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy. Catherine was supported by eight more Bells, all equally as gorgeous and together they delivered an event to be remembered that was a year in the planning. Jack's Belles, as they are known, were honoured by Merlin, the owners of Blackpool Tower who lit the tower orange for the evening in recognition of this special occasion, which was a fundraiser in support of the work of the Muir Maxwell Trust.

Two further highlights that must be mentioned, Catherine's sister Joanne gave her debut solo singing performance, accompanied by Tony, Jack's Dad on the keyboard. The room was stunned in to silence as she sang, with a voice like Adele, her own version of 'Read All About It' by Emeli Sandi.  A silent room burst in to tumultuous applause and a standing ovation followed. What an amazing gift this lovely primary school teacher has! A further highlight was the band - guests then danced the night away to Reever, Tony's rock and pop cover band, with Tony on the keyboard. Thank you guys!

An all-round outstanding evening - and what's more, whilst having a ball, they successfully raised an amazing £12,000 for MMT for which we are shouting out loud an absolutely enormous, enormous THANK YOU!!!

Oh, and MMT founders (us) Ann & Jonny Maxwell had a blast!




Jack's Belles 4th Ladies Lunch November 2012

Jack's Belles dedicated following of ladies who lunch rose to the occasion once again at the Jack's Belles annual Ladies Lunch in Lytham St Anne's, in support of the Muir Maxwell Trust. Funds raised exceeded £4,500 with a further cheque for £689 was presented to Catherine Bell, mother of Jack, by Helen Sargison who recently ran the Blackpool 10k.

Jack, now aged 6, like Muir Maxwell, has Dravet Syndrome and the Bell family continue to struggle with this challenge to Jack's health. Family life is different for the Bells but they are supported by Catherine's girlfriends who have come to be affectionately known as Jack's Belles. Together and tirelessly they all raise funds for the Muir Maxwell Trust, in support of Jack and his family.

The afternoon was deeply emotional for everyone who attended as Catherine led her audience down a memory lane of six years of Jack and his struggle with Dravet Syndrome, a story that has now been shared over that time with all of these ladies who come back every year and show their support.  Compere and Jack's Belle, Helen Dentith-Adams (who was not pregnant this year!), lead the afternoon's events and the fundraising with energy, enthusiasm and laughter that can only be likened to that of a true professional. Remarkable!

MMT's Founder was guest speaker for the occasion and true to her promise (unlike previous years) she did not spoil the make- up of the lovely ladies who lunch by reducing them to tears and the mascara remained intact! -  But rather took the opportunity to update all on the achievements of the Trust over the last 10 years, which was very well received.

This kind of fundraising is invaluable to MMT and so much appreciated by us all. More valuable still is the friendship that has emerged with all of Jack's Belles and our MMT team, moral support that goes a long, long way towards helping our cause and our families.

Heartfelt thanks to each and everyone!








Jack's Belles 3rd Ladies Lunch November 2011

Jack's Belles held their annual ladies lunch in Blackpool and broke their record once again, this time raising over £4800. The Trust's founder and volunteer fundraiser, Ann Maxwell had the privilege of witnessing their achievements. The atmosphere was buzzing, full of warm and friendly caring ladies, all friends and family who want to support Catherine and Tony in their care of Jack who has dravet syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy. The eleven Jack's Belles, all Catherine's close friends were also in attendance.

There were raffle prizes galore and amazing auction lots, and wonderful party dresses too. A very pregnant Helen managed proceedings with enormous grace and humour. Ann gave a speech about the Trust and her own experience of raising Muir after whom the Trust is named. There were tissues and tears throughout the room. It was all emotionally charged but very special and it was a lovely afternoon.

Heartfelt thanks to all of Jack's Belles and their supporters for their ongoing commitment and support and congratulations to Helen who has now given birth to baby Henry!

Jack's Belles Ladies Lunch 2011 (1)

Jack's Belles 2nd Ladies Lunch November 2010

"Catherine Bell and her Jack's Belles hosted their 2nd Ladies Lunch at The Grand Hotel in Lytham St Anne's on Saturday 6th November 2010.

This year 180 ladies attended the afternoon which started with a champagne reception, followed by a 3 course lunch, raffle and silent auction. The room looked stunning in pink and white, and all guests received a handmade cupcake to take away.

The afternoon was again compèred by one of the Belles, Helen Adams, who used her skills as a Brownie leader to keep the ladies entertained and in line!

Catherine gave a very emotional speech about living with Dravet Syndrome and what she hopes for Jack in the future.

Paul Stone who is the Director of Flight Operations at Catherine's place of work was the speaker for the afternoon.  He showed some hilarious clips of the Marines on a training exercise and also how his family deals with his wife Rosie working in Afghanistan as part of the Territorial Army.

A final surprise at the end of the afternoon was from Jackie Adjety, a friend of Catherine's family, who presented a cheque to Catherine for the MMT for just over £1000. The money was raised by Jackie by successfully completing a sponsored climb up Mount Kilimanjaro!

In total, the ladies raised a staggering £6,000 during the afternoon - beating last year's total of £3,500 by a long way!! It was a highly emotionally charged afternoon, with lots of tears and laughter - and a huge success!"

Thank you Catherine and Jack's Belles


Jack's Belles Ladies Lunch November 2009

Catherine Bell and her team of 'Jack's Belles' decided that raising over £10,000 for MMT this year wasn't quite enough of a challenge for them and so they, (and two new team members!) set to planning an elegant ladies' lunch at The Grand Hotel in Lytham St. Anne's for 28th November 2009.

They were joined by 150 guests who enjoyed a champagne reception and fabulous three-course meal.

The Belles managed to secure some fabulous prizes for their Grand Auction, including a helicopter trip for two around the Lake District, a hamper full of gorgeous Clarins products and a luxurious spa day!

Catherine gave a very moving speech and her sister Jo read a poem with strong emotional resonance for the team, 'Welcome to Holland', which talks about the experience of raising a child with a disability.

The afternoon was compared by family friend who kept the guests entertained while Edward Thistlewaite a Detective Inspector with Lancashire Police spoke warmly about the work of the Belles and shared some hair-raising stories from his time on the force!

The ladies raised a magnificent £3,500 on the day.  Everyone at MMT is enormously proud of the team and we would like to extend a huge thank you to absolutely everyone involved.  The contribution made by our loyal community fundraisers is vital and we thank you all from the bottom of our hearts.

Jack's Belles

Catherine and Jack's Belles Present Ann Maxwell With their ChequeCatherine and Jack's Belles Present Ann Maxwell With their Cheque





Catherine and Jack's Belles Present Ann Maxwell With their Cheque













Jack's Belles Masquerade Ball May 2009

Jack Bell is 22 months and suffers from uncontrolled epilepsy. He started having seizures at just a few months old and despite trying numerous epilepsy medications, the seizures are still not controlled. At present he is having up to 10 seizures in a day. All the tests so far have come back clear, and he has now been tested for Dravet's syndrome, his parents Catherine and Tony are anxiously waiting for the results.

In order to do something positive, Catherine has joined together with a group of her friends (known collectively as ‘Jack's Belles'!) and is arranging a number of fundraising activities for the MMT, including a Masquerade black tie ball on the 16th May 2009. Already the support has been tremendous and Jack's Belles have had promises of flower arrangements for all the tables, favours for each of the 180 guests and raffle prizes including a BMW pedal car and a top of the range BMW for a weekend, all from local businesses in the Blackpool area. The tickets sold out in just 5 days!

Catherine told us, "Unless you are living with the condition on a daily basis I don't think you can appreciate the stress of daily life. My eldest son Oliver who is 5, is witnessing Jack's seizures and having to deal with them as a normal part of his life. It is heartbreaking to see him stroking Jack's hair during a seizure and we can't do anything to stop them. We need to raise awareness and support each other and do all we can to make our children's lives better."




Update - August 2009

Catherine and her team of 'Jacks Belles' arrived in Edinburgh on 24th July for a well deserved weekend break at The Balmoral Hotel.

Before the relaxing could begin the girls wanted to present Ann Maxwell with a cheque for the combined total of all of their fantastic fundraising efforts.  They have managed to raise an absolutely amazing £10,000 this year and they have no plans to stop anytime soon!

There are plans afoot for a ladies lunch later in the year and running vests have been purchased for the Belles brave enough to tackle the Great North Run in September.

We would like to say an enormous thank you to Catherine and her team and to all of those who supported each of their events.  Their hard work will allow us to continue our vital support of families just like Jack's who are caring for a child with epilepsy.

Catherine and Jack's Belles Present Ann Maxwell With their Cheque