Billingshurst Primary School’s main hall was full to capacity for a very special event on Wednesday April 30.
Over 150 people came along to meet Lynda Lewis, Billingshurst Primary School’s very own Sewing Bee star.
The event, ‘An Evening with Lynda Lewis’ follows Lynda’s triumph on BBC 2’s The Great British Sewing Bee and in response to the number of enquiries and questions she’s had from fans across the South of England.
Sponsored by Kavanagh’s Budgens and Pfaff, the evening proved to be a huge success, raising over £1,500 for Billingshurst Primary School’s Outdoor Project and to fund the running of Lynda’s new after school craft club for the pupils, to inspire the next generation of mini sewing bees.
Those lucky enough to get tickets were treated to an exclusive viewing of the winning garments of the week and Lynda’s personal experience of the making of The Great British Sewing Bee, as well as some very practical tips on sewing.
Lynda’s interpreter from the programme, Helen Hamston, was also on hand to support Lynda and to help interpret to the audience. The question and answer session revealed that Lynda’s desert island essentials would be electricity, wifi and Patrick Grant, a judge on the programme!
Following the discussion, guests took part in a silent auction to win afternoon tea, a private sewing lesson and two ties made by Lynda for the event.
Funds were also boosted by a raffle with prizes donated by the Cloth Store in Horsham, In the Making and Katinka Designs.
Helen Williamson, Billingshurst Primary School’s Headteacher commented: “We are very proud of Lynda for inspiring so many people beyond the school and for her tireless efforts to help our children benefit from her talent. It was a lovely evening, Lynda doesn’t realise what a star she is.”
After the event, Lynda touchingly tweeted: “My highlight of tonight was finding out that a young school girl won the silent auction for an hour’s sewing lesson with me.”
The evening was attended by Morgan Rees, Store Manager from Kavanagh’s Budgens and Jan Wright, Sales Educator from Pfaff who presented Lynda with an overlocker; a machine which is highly prized by Lynda. Janome also donated two sewing machines for the School’s craft club.
As for Lynda’s next steps, despite the huge amount of interest around her, she has no plans to run workshops as sewing will always be her hobby and teaching children is her passion.
Report and picture contributedby Kate Clifford on behalf of the BPSCA.