Cherry Lodge Cancer Care was very fortunate indeed to have Lisa Faulkner as our speaker and guest of honour at our fundraising afternoon tea on Monday 25th April 2016. The event was held in the magnificent surroundings of Hadley Wood Golf Club and proved extremely popular.
Lisa was already known to many of us for acting in TV series such as Dangerfield, Brookside, Holby City and Spooks, and also, more recently, for winning Celebrity Masterchef in 2010. What we did not know until the day was was what a lovely and engaging speaker she would turn out to be.
Our compere for the afternoon was Rose J. (a very competent performer in her own right). Rose began the proceedings by introducing Lisa to her audience (some 78 ladies and two gentlemen). Then, at Lisa’s suggestion, everyone devoted their full attention to the excellent afternoon tea which included a good choice of sandwiches and dainty cakes.
Rose and Lisa then stood up again for the question and answer session – an informal but informative alternative to a ‘talk’. We learned about Lisa’s favourite leading man (in her dreams and in reality), her favourite restaurants, her secret for making good pastry (having cold hands and touching the dough as little as possible), whether she would like to return to acting (yes, for the right part), her ‘Death Row meal’ (oysters, a roast chicken dinner and her mum’s pavlova).
When asked how she developed her interest in cooking (which, since Masterchef has been her main career), Lisa told us that her mother, who died of cancer when Lisa was sixteen, and her grandmothers had been obsessed with food, cooking, eating and entertaining, and had clearly passed their interest on in their genes. At this point a member of the audience raised a smile by crying out: ‘I have clearly failed my daughter!”
Perhaps most fascinating of all were Lisa’s inside stories about taking part in Masterchef, which sounded frankly terrifying. Everything is rushed, there are no people to help, no washers up, no make up artists on hand, and when you are told ‘You have five minutes’, they mean it!
Before the event, Cherry Lodge had been given a beautiful quilt made by members of Furzefield W.I., which was auctioned by Rose – a contest that was won by Lisa J. There was also a raffle with some very tempting prizes.
Many people also took up the opportunity to buy autographed copies of Lisa’s most recent book, Tea and Cake, with the publisher’s discount of £5 per copy being donated to Cherry Lodge. She also told us about her next book, Recipes from 100 Mothers, which is due out next year, and to which she invited us to contribute our own recipes and the stories relating to them.
Thank you again to Lisa and to everyone else involved in making this such a lovely, light-hearted and well organised afternoon.
Click on the small images below to see larger, complete photographs.