On Thursday 12 November, over 300 guests joined Park Theatre Artistic Director Jez Bond, theatre staff, and volunteer at a gala fundraising dinner at Stoke Newington Town Hall, hosted in inimitable style by Ian McKellen. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, MP for Islington North and a longtime supporter of Park Theatre’s work, attended with wife Laura Alvarez. Broadcaster Clive Anderson led a lively auction for a luxurious selection of donated prizes, including money-can’t-buy experiences such as dinner with Benedict Cumberbatch and ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ evening of home cooking with Maureen Lipman. The auction alone raised £133,500, and the overall total raised for the evening was £215,000. Guests and friends of the theatre present included Alex Hanson, Alison Steadman, Anita Dobson, Derek Jacobi Frances Barber, Gillian Anderson, Greg Wise, Hattie Morahan, Honeysuckle Weeks, Jane Asher, Janet Street-Porter, Jemma Redgrave, Matthew Horne, Matthew Kelly, Orlando Bloom, Owen Jones, Samantha Bond, Tamzin Outhwaite, Tanya Franks, Tanya Moodie, Tim McInnerny and Tracy Ullman. Guests at the Gala enjoyed a delicious three-course dinner created by Boulevard Catering including seabass, lamb with a Meaux mustard sauce and frangipane apple tart, accompanied by Casanova Prosecco.