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GOWR Annual Ball 2016The GOWR Annual Ball held at The Grosvenor House Park Lane London on Sunday 27th November proved to be another great success. The reception starting at 5.30pm guests had already started to arrive, as you entered the auditorium you were greeted with a fun casino with prizes to be won, Lisa Marie entertained during the reception with her exceptional vocal talent, magicians mingling and entertaining. At 6.30pm the call to dinner from our toastmaster Brian Greenhan, guests sat and the fun began, Water Rat Ian Irving kicked off the fundraising with the classic heads and tails, 600 started the game whittled down to the last ten, they were invited to the dance floor, only one of them could win the £250.00 cash prize, of the remaining ten was our Prince Rat Adger Brown, the next spin of the coin 8 went heads two tails, it lands as a tail, eight gone two left of which Prince Rat was one, the other a guest, a fine young lady, at this point it was obvious who was going to win and it wasn't going to be Prince Rat, he knew, probably because Water Rat Ian had told him, he lost the lady won and rightly so.
All Water Rats were invited to the floor to open with The Anthem led by PKR Roger DeCourcey with the gathered ensemble of rats joining in after the opening verse. Back to their seats and dinner served after a very topical grace from PKR Graham Cole OBE, the entertainment started early with the very talented young performers of the Sylvia Young Theatre School giving a tribute to Garland, full of energy and zest, the audience loved them, King Rat then presented Sylvia Young with a £1000.00 bursary to help provide funding for one of the pupils.
Past King Kaplan Kaye and Past Prince Brian Burden gave us the traditional "just one more chance" with everyone in the audience joining in, a lot of fun.
Speeches from the Top Table were also very entertaining, Nicholas Parsons giving the toast to the ladies, the response from the wonderful actress who looked absolutely fantastic Anita Dobson, then comedian Johnnie Casson had the room in fits of laughter, it was back to King Rat for the serious side of the night with the awards. The first award was The King Rats Special Award going to PP Chris Emmett, The Rat of The Year went to John McKenzie fondly known as our Paparazzi Rat, The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to PP Jimmy Tarbuck, it's not an award presented every year and not always presented to a Water Rat but his service to the entertainment industry is to be applauded and rewarded, I felt he was touched by the gesture and his response would suggest so. PP Ken Joy received The Bar awarded for his dedication and time spent in making sure our history is preserved and is there for all to enjoy, the museum being a thankless task but one which he can be very proud, just one of the reasons the award was given. The Friend of The Year Award went to Kevin Garner who has assisted the King Rat and the GOWR in many ways this year and he was without doubt a very worthy recipient.
The live auction conducted by Prince Rat Adger Brown helped raise some much needed coins for the charity fund, once the lights were sorted it was all systems go, no one does it quite like our PR.
Top of the Bill time and the ever popular Joe Longthorne took to the stage and once he invited people down to the floor that was it the room rocked, he must of enjoyed himself as he didn't want to come off nor did the audience want him to either, a great show.
The raffle was drawn next and then the announcement of the new officers for 2017.....to finish the night it was over to our band Mixed Feelings who had the floor packed until it was time to go home, all in all a very successful night and a good amount of coins raised for the charitable funds, as soon as we have the final figure it will be posted here as will more photos etc.
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