A renowned jeweller has donated a pair of diamond stud earrings worth £4,000 as a raffle prize to raise money for the County Durham hospice which cared for his mother.

Berry’s Jewellers, based on Grey Street in Newcastle, is continuing its support of County Durham-based Willow Burn Hospice, in Lanchester, with the donation of the jewellery as the main prize in the charity’s annual Diamonds and Pearls Ball.

David Nicholson, the store manager at Berry’s, is a long-time supporter of Willow Burn in response to the care and support his mother Ann Johnson received from the team during her illness.

The Northern Echo: David Nicholson, the store manager of Berry’s Jewellers in Newcastle, and Willow Burn Hospice’s Head of Fundraising and Marketing, Rachel QuinceDavid Nicholson, the store manager of Berry’s Jewellers in Newcastle, and Willow Burn Hospice’s Head of Fundraising and Marketing, Rachel Quince (Image: WILLOW BURN)

Willow Burn provides end-of-life and palliative care for people with incurable illnesses through a range of holistic day care, inpatient services, family support and bereavement counselling.

As a way of saying thank you to the clinical nursing staff and the wider hospice team, David and his team are providing the opportunity for one lucky raffle winner to take home a pair of 18ct White Gold Diamond Stud Earrings.

He said: “I will forever be grateful to the amazing team at Willow Burn Hospice for the love and care they provided to my mother during her last hours, and it was a huge comfort to all the family knowing she was as comfortable as possible.

“The team there have the biggest hearts, and, to me, there is no monetary value you can put on the outstanding support they provide to families across County Durham every day of the week.

“I am incredibly proud to be able to support Willow Burn Hospice which has a very special place in the hearts of my family, and I urge people to get behind this amazing charity and support such a vital end-of-life service.

“The earrings we are donating are a spectacular pair of diamond stud earrings crafted from polished 18ct white gold and featuring a round, brilliant-cut diamond, and they will be a real treat for one lucky winner.

“With the support of Berry’s, I hope to raise as much money as possible so other families can receive the fantastic care and support that mine did.”

Willow Burn’s Diamonds and Pearls Ball will take place on Friday, March 1, at Beamish Hall Hotel.

The annual black-tie ball will raise funds towards the hospice’s daily care and support services and will include entertainment, a drinks reception, a three-course meal with wine and the Diamond Raffle and Auction.

Rachel Quince, the hospice’s head of fundraising and marketing, said: “The team is counting down the days to what is the highlight of our social calendar, and we appreciate the generosity the community shows in supporting Willow Burn Hospice.

“Our team is blown away and eternally grateful to David and the Berry’s team for sponsoring the ball and for donating these gorgeous, glamorous earrings which will certainly turn heads when worn by the winner.


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“For many, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own such a luxury item of jewellery and the interest generated through raffle ticket sales will provide a huge financial boost to our hospice.”

Returning to host the ball is North East personality and former BBC Radio Newcastle presenter Alfie Joey, who now lists artist, broadcaster, podcaster, comedian, communication coach, impressionist, interviewer and children’s author among his many business pursuits.

He said: “Willow Burn Hospice is such a special place and I had such an amazing time hosting the ball last year. It was one of my most memorable nights of the year.