Portsmouth headteacher at charity gala night with royalty

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Cllr Hannah Hockaday

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THE head of a Portsmouth school rubbed shoulders with the stars at a charity gala dinner on Thursday night where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge made their first official engagement as a married couple.

Dame Sharon Hollows, principal of the Charter Academy, was one of 1,000 guests at the black-tie event to mark the tenth anniversary of her school’s sponsors Absolute Return for Kids (ARK).

The evening, which was attended by Prince William and his wife Kate as well as a host of celebrities like Colin Firth, Elizabeth Hurley and Jemima Khan, raised a staggering £17.2m for ARK and the Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry.

Dame Sharon said: ‘It was an incredibly special evening and it was wonderful to see so much money being raised for ARK to enable it to give our children opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise have. The Duke and Duchess seemed to be very happy. Kate was smiling all the time and looked absolutely stunning.’