Ann Shelton has helped to raise more than £1m for the Yorkshire Cancer Centre Appeal and its predecessor, the Cookridge Cancer Centre Appeal, through the promotion of 14 annual gala balls at the town’s Hotel Majestic.
And she is already looking at making inroads into the next million when his year’s event is staged on Saturday September 24.
She said: “We are fortunate to have such a wonderful cancer centre at St James’s Hospital in Leeds serving more than 2 million people from across Yorkshire, including Harrogate. I hope this honour gives further recognition to the excellent clinical care that is provided by its wonderful team of staff.”
Sheila O’ Shea, Yorkshire Cancer Centre Appeal Director, said: “Everyone connected with the appeal is delighted that Ann’s work has been richly rewarded in this way. The contribution she has made through the Harrogate balls to our past, present and future success is enormous.
“Her name is synonymous with fund-raising to help people with cancer. Her enthusiasm is infectious, and her desire and determination to raise as much money as possible with every event she promotes is an inspiration.”
Mrs Shelton first became involved in fund-raising when she helped launch the Leeds Cancer Relief Committee – forerunner to Macmillan Cancer Relief – back in the 1960s.
Since then she has worked as a volunteer at the former Cookridge Hospital, in parallel to being a key member of a number of major fund-raising committees supporting both cancer appeals in their quest to raise £3m and £10m respectively.
Once Cookridge Hospital closed and services transferred three years ago to the £250m Yorkshire Cancer Centre at St James’s Institute of Oncology, she maintained her fundraising work.
Mrs Shelton, who as Ann Bates formerly ran the Leeds-based Daniels Bates recruitment agency and its national network of offices, played an active role in helping St Gemma’s Hospice, Leeds, raise £1.5m for a major refurbishment progamme in 2000. She currently lives in the Ilkley district.