John’s Valentine’s dinner

John Hogson, right,with guests at his Valentine's Day meal
John Hogson, right,with guests at his Valentine's Day meal

Valentine’s Day was a night to remember for some couples – thanks to the hard work of fundraiser John Hodgson.

The 61-year-old turned three rooms of his home on Sandringham Drive, Brinscall, into a restaurant for the evening.

The 18 guests were greeted with a welcome drink before sitting down to a six-course meal prepared by John.

There was a choice of three dishes for each course, with quail eggs, home-smoked salmon, Thai curry and Italian panna cotta among the options.

John, a former chemistry teacher, spent days planning the menu and preparing the food.

The rooms were even decorated with red balloons and heart-shaped napkins, while all the women were given a red rose.

John said: “It went very well. I was exhausted and there were a lot of stress to get there, but I served everybody on time.”

John turned his home into a restaurant to raise money for Rosemere Cancer Foundation as part of its month-long Valentine’s appeal.

He has been a loyal supporter of the charity since his wife, Catherine, died from breast cancer in 2006 and is volunteer representative on the management


John asked people to donate whatever they thought the meal was worth, and also held a raffle, raising £664 for the charity.

He said: “I’m very pleased. I was overwhelmed by people’s generosity.

“The aim was to raise a substantial amount and that was probably more than I dreamed I would get.”

Daniel Hill, area fundraising co-ordinator for Rosemere Cancer Foundation, said: “When it comes to helping us as a charity, John has done pretty much everything there is to do.

“As one of our most loyal supporters, we were delighted he staged an event for our 2014 Valentine’s Appeal.”