Isle of Man's Specsavers opticians has helped raise hundreds of pounds for a Douglas primary school to contribute towards the cost of building a new outdoor play area for students.

Specsavers on Strand Street in Douglas sponsored the latest Sporting and Dining Club event with celebrity journalist and broadcaster John Sergeant, at the Palace Hotel.

A charity raffle on the night raised £460 for Specsavers’ nominated charity, which was ‘Friends of St Mary’s’, a group of parents and stakeholders responsible for fundraising at St Mary’s RC Primary School on St Mary’s Road in Douglas.

Staff from the store attended and supported the event, the proceeds of which will go towards enhancements to the school’s outdoor field and building new timber trail style obstacle courses for use during PE lessons and breaks.

St Mary’s head teacher Mr Tim Short says the money received has provided a real boost for the project: ‘When we heard that Specsavers had nominated us as their chosen charity for the Sporting and Dining Club event we were over the moon as the money raised will really help us on our way to funding the new outdoor area.

‘The generosity of businesses like Specsavers as well as parents and local people is essential in helping us to maintain and enhance the environment and experiences we provide for students at the school.

‘Our Friends of St Mary’s group is working hard to ensure that our dream of a new outdoor area becomes a reality in the near future and all support is very much appreciated.’

The Sporting and Dining Club is a membership organisation which brings celebrities from the worlds of sport, business, entertainment and politics to speak at events held at locations across the island.

The next event is set to take place at the Villa Marina with one of the world’s greatest living explorers, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, on 26 June.

Raising vital charity funds

Adrian Higgins, store director at Specsavers in Douglas, says: ‘These events are a great platform for raising vital funds for charities across the island and we are proud to support them.

‘St Mary’s isn’t far from the store and many of our team have links with the school or have supported its fundraising events before, so we were keen to contribute towards improvements at St Mary’s, which is a key part of the local community.

‘We are pleased to be able to contribute towards their plan to overhaul their outdoor area and wish them every success with the rest of their fundraising.’

All Isle of Man store information