Karis May Darling event 'bigger every year'

Thurrock Gazette: The event took place in the grounds of Gable Hall School The event took place in the grounds of Gable Hall School

MORE than 4,000 people turned out to raise a whopping £17,000 for a charity concert in memory of Karis May Darling.

TOWIE’s Patricia ‘Nanny Pat’ Brooker, Perry Kiely from Diversity and West Ham’s Steve Potts were among the guests at the Gable Hall concert on Sunday, which saw performances from Britain’s Got Talent contestants James Smith, Youth Creation and Henrietta Adewole as well as X-Factor’s Amy Mottram and 43 local acts.

The event was raising money for the Karis May Darling Foundation, which provides support and opportunities for under privileged children through performing arts and sports in memory of Karis, who died in 2011 after contracting a Streptococcus A, a bug which can cause meningitis.

The money raised will now be spent on equipment for the Karis May Darling Centre in Corringham Park as well as in sponsoring local causes.

Prizes for the first Karis May Darling Trophy football tournament were presented by Steve Potts, the event’s stalls ran out of stock and all 800 cakes donated by residents were gobbled up.

The event was also supported by Essex Fire and Rescue, Essex Police and fire training company FITT.

Karis’s dad John, who managed the event, said the event built on previous years’ successes and next year’s was already being planned.

He said: “The event is getting bigger every year now and is our main day to raise funds for the foundation whilst at the same time providing a platform for local aspiring talent to perform.

“I wish my little Karis were here to see the show now as she would have been involved in everything to do with it.

“We still miss her every second of every day and I like to think she is up there in heaven, looking down at us all and feeling very proud at what her foundation is now achieving in helping others, which is what she was known for.”

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