The Agents Giving Ball on Friday delivered glamour, huge fun and exceptional entertainment – all while raising money for charity and recognising our industry heroes.
The highlight was the Agents Strictly Come Dancing competition, where the coveted Glitterball was competed for by: Allison Barfoot of Woolley & Wallis; Emelie Braneby of Victorstone; the ever-young Jane Gardner, industry consultant to the discerning; Matt Fosberry of Fixflo; Matthew Lester of Maxine Lester Lettings and Property Management whose wife Maxine won last year; Oliver Sanhaji of Anderson Rose; Peter Fenwick of Reapit; Reagan Bradley of Paramount; Simon Bradbury (competing for a second time – is he mad or in breach of some obscure clause in the Estate Agents Act?) of Thomas Morris; and Steven Wilson of Paramount Properties.
The hugely popular competition was won by the wonderful Jane Gardner, who looks to be about 26. But maybe we should shave a couple of years off that.
Agents were also individually recognised for their fund-raising efforts – and here the fabulous Simon Bradbury shone, with the individual award for his work for charity.
He told us: “I had absolutely no idea about this award at all, and to walk out on stage to hundreds of industry colleagues on their feet applauding me is absolutely something I will never ever forget as long as I live!
“Such a surprise, it nearly made me cry – not good when you’re about to do a tango!”
He explained: “Whilst I was changing into my dance costume, the dancing organisers asked me to come downstairs for something just minutes before the main dancing competition was due to start – and I was literally standing in my underpants (NOT a pretty sight ) when they knocked on the dressing room door to inform me that my presence was required for something that they couldn’t tell me about!
“I’m still in a genuine state of absolute shock at the award – but very very humbled and grateful. It is the absolute highlight of my professional life of more than 35 years as an estate agent. I still can’t quite believe it.
“If there was one word to describe the evening it would be fun.”
Simon Whale on Friday showed no hard feelings at last year’s harsh judging when he didn’t win, raised £10,000 and then did a dance. Well, that’s what he called it.
Our man on the spot (incoming EYE editor Neil Gerrard) seemed a bit puzzled at his first attendance of an industry spectacular.
He confessed: “I did wonder who the strange man dressed as a Bavarian, complete with lederhosen and an Alpine-style hat, was.”
Neil, we should have said this was part of your induction.
Honestly, it could only happen at the Agents Giving ball.
EYE would like to thank organiser Peter Knight and his fantastic team for their ingenuity, time and effort in putting on what is surely now established as the industry’s party of the year.
Next year, the ball will be in its fifth year.
We can only say: Get your tickets now!