b'AROUND THE WORLD | THE IRELAND FUND OF GREAT BRITAIN1 23 4The Ireland Fund of Great Britains 10th Annual Winter Ball DECEMBER, 2011 THE IRELAND FUND OF GREAT BRITAIN IS DELIGHTED TO ANNOUNCE THATTHEWINTERBALLEXCEEDEDITSGOALANDRAISED 113,000ONTHENIGHT,FORIRISH PEOPLE IN NEED IN THE UK. Over 350 guests enjoyed a champagne reception in the River Room followed by a fabulous dinner and dancing in the enchanting Lancaster Ballroom, in the iconic Savoy Hotel. Guests were welcomed by IFGBCo-Chair Ruth McCarthy who was delighted to extend a special welcome to celebrity and VIP guests includingComedianand TV Presenter Graham Norton, former featherweight boxing champion Barry McGuigan, designers Orla Kiely and Paul Costelloe, and Irish Ambassador HE Bobby MacDonagh and his wife, Mary. Ruth introduced Kieran McLoughlin President andCEO of The Worldwide Ireland Funds; who told guests of the remarkable strength of relationships between the different IrelandFunds and he introduced a DVD of the Queens historic visit to Ireland earlier this year cementing the special relationship between Britain and Ireland. Comedian and TV Presenter Graham Norton, who hails from Bandon in County Cork, received theIreland Fund Award for his contribution to Irish cultural life in the UK.He treated the guests to a hilarious account of his childhood in Bandon, where he always knew he was different. He spoke about how he felt at home the minute he got to London; and how many years later he finds himself inexplicably drawn back to West Cork. He praised the work of The IrelandFund of Great Britain in continuing to raise funds and awareness in difficult economic times. Grant Ford of Sothebys AuctionHouse then hosted the live auctionthe amazing lots included a weekend in a Monaco villa once owned by Coco Chanel, a boxat the Ireland v. England rugby match on St Patricks Day, and two tickets to the X Factor Live Finalwhich Louis Walshturned up to personally deliver. Special thanks to headline sponsorSan Leon, champagne sponsorDSM Demolition, Orla Kiely, Lir Chocolate, Jameson Whiskey, Conde Naste, Hodder & Stoughton, and Niche Group.connect 2012 | 92'