£17,500 raised at first Nick Smith Foundation Autumn Ball

Rachel Smith speaking at The Autumn Ball
Rachel Smith speaking at The Autumn Ball

The Nick Smith Foundation’s first Autumn Ball raised over £17,500 to support the fight against Motor Neurone Disease (MND).

Nick, a dad-of-two from Halifax, who died from the disease last December, was remembered at the event at The Arches at Dean Clough by 300 family, friends and colleagues who came together for a three-course meal, auction, raffle, games and dancing.

The Nick Smith Foundation's first Autumn Ball

The Nick Smith Foundation's first Autumn Ball

The money will be part of the £50,000 pledged by the charity for the Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience. It will be used to support the purchase of a piece of equipment, a Nanostring Ncounter.

The machine is a pioneering and very important research tool which supports the work to find out more about MND and, crucially, find out more about what is needed to change the way the disease develops so that one day we can find treatment and a cure.

Nick Smith Foundation Chair Stephen Naylor, who is married to Nick’s sister, said: “Progress in the fight against MND is being made – but not enough, and not fast enough. The team at the Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience, who were with us at the Ball, are doing amazing work, and the amazing amount raised will help them do even more in Nick’s memory and in Nick’s name.”

Nick’s wife Rachel spoke at the Ball about her memories of him and how, 10 months on from his death, she is proud of the charity’s achievements.

The Nick Smith Foundation's first Autumn Ball

The Nick Smith Foundation's first Autumn Ball

She said: “Thank you to everyone who came to the Ball and shared an evening with us in memory of Nick. It was fantastic and overwhelming to see so many of our family and friends in one room. I am so grateful for the support and proud of the money we raised to support our charity.”

Since being formed in May, The Nick Smith Foundation has raised tens of thousands of pounds through a series of events – from a rugby tournament for U7s to individuals raising money doing events like the Great North Run, Yorkshire Three Peaks and Vale of York Half Marathon.