Stars including Benedict Cumberbatch, Ed Sheeran, Hugh Laurie and Dame Helen Mirren have all shown support in a major celebrity auction in aid of national charity Turn2us. The auction, which concluded yesterday and raised nearly £3,000 for the charity, is part of the No Cold Homes campaign supporting those struggling with the cost of heating their home.
Benedict Cumberbatch achieved the highest price with one fan bidding £500 for his Emporio Armani fleece. Ed Sheeran’s jacket scooped £407 and Hugh Laurie’s leather coat went for £350. Other items included a match side coat donated by Arsene Wenger, a signed trilby from singer Olly Murs and a Diane Von Furstenburg dress donated by Downton Abbey star Joanne Froggatt.
Research carried out by Turn2us for the campaign revealed that half of those on low incomes are worried about the cost of heating their home this winter, with those with disabilities and parents most at risk.
Simon Hopkins, Chief Executive of Turn2us commented, “I’m delighted that so many celebrities have supported the campaign and that so many people bid for items to help raise money for the work that we do. Too many people, especially those of an older generation, will suffer in silence this winter and so it’s really important that we get the message out there that help is available.”
The campaign, which concludes on 16th December, brings together a range of support for those struggling with energy costs including a free Benefit Calculator for people to check their entitlement to welfare benefits, and a Grant Search with details of over 3,000 charitable trusts and funds.
In addition Turn2us awarded over £4 million last year in grants to those struggling through a range of specialist funds which form part of the charity.
“The support of these big names not only helps us raise money but it allows our help to get through to an even bigger audience,” commented Simon Hopkins.
“It’s vital that those struggling know that support is out there, for example only 12% of those struggling with their energy bills have contacted their supplier, and 84% are unaware that grants could be available to help with the cost of heating."
Anyone worried about how they will cope this winter should visit turn2us.org.uk/NoColdHomes and find out what the options are. No one should have to suffer a cold home this Christmas.”