Celebrity watch

Sophie Ellis-Bextor supports the Children's Society.

Sophie Ellis-Baxtor
Sophie Ellis-Baxtor
<p>Singer and model Sophie Ellis-Bextor posed in a tub full of decorative cake sprinkles to launch the Children's Society's Hundreds and Thousands of Childhood Memories campaign.</p>

By collecting cherished early memories from the public, the society will build a picture of what a happy childhood should be and contribute to its Good Childhood Inquiry - an independent inquiry that will make recommendations it hopes will improve the way in which childhood is experienced and understood in the UK.

"I want my children to have some fantastic memories," said Ellis-Bextor, who was photographed by fashion photographer Rankin for the campaign launch. "Being covered in hundreds and thousands is much more fun than I imagined, but the serious message is that we really need hundreds and thousands of childhood memories. Please share yours."

- Scottish singer KT Tunstall, former Blur bassist turned cheese maker Alex James and British electropop band Hot Chip will contribute elements of a tale in a children's book of bedtime stories to raise money for the NSPCC. Each will write 10 lines before passing it on. In total, 52 celebrities will contribute to the story, which will be read out at a special event before being auctioned to raise money for the children's charity. "I'm delighted to be part of a creative project dedicated to helping children in distress," says Tunstall. "Every child deserves a bedtime story. This story may help those who never get one."

- Cherie Booth, the human rights barrister and wife of former Prime Minister Tony Blair, opened Jewish care charity Norwood's Wellbeing at Bearsted health centre in Hackney, east London, last week. The centre was developed through a partnership with the City and Hackney Primary Care Trust and Woodberry Down Children's Centre.

- Former Welsh international rugby player Scott Quinnell has been appointed as an ambassador of the Make-A-Wish Foundation to raise the charity's profile in its 21st year. The charity has granted more than 4,500 wishes since it was established in 1986 and hopes to grant its 5,000th wish this year.

The One and Only presenter Graham Norton has launched the new phase of the Parkinson's Disease Society's Party for Parkinson's fundraising initiative, which aims to raise £100,000 for the charity this year. Norton, whose father had Parkinson's, made a speech at the launch party at the Century Club in London last week.

Steve Davis, the snooker player who won six world championships in the 80s and is currently ranked number 15 in the world, has been patron of Orchid, the charity that funds research into and promotes awareness of testicular, prostate and penile cancers, since the charity was formed in 1996.

His friend Colin Osbourne, who founded the charity after surviving testicular cancer, asked Davis, also known by snooker fans as the Ginger Magician, to take on the role to boost Orchid's profile.

"Men need to be aware of the importance of self-examination and regular health check-ups, just as women are," says Davis. "I hope we can break down the barriers of embarrassment that men have when discussing male cancer so that the disease is caught much earlier."

Angus Somerville, chief executive of Orchid, says: "Steve is a fantastic supporter of the charity. If there's something to be done and if he can make it, he will."


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