Prior Park College Helps to Raise £5000 for Second Sight Charity

20 Nov 2013

Staff and pupils at Prior Park College have succeeded in helping to raise £5000 for Second Sight, a charity that is spearheading the on-going battle against blindness caused by cataracts in some of the poorest regions in the world, through holding an adaptation of Jane Eyre at the school.

Supported by members of Arundell House, a girls’ day house at Prior Park College, the charity has done an exceptional job in raising around £5000 in one night for Second Sight, through holding a professional, one-woman performance of Jane Eyre: An Autobiography in the Julian Slade Theatre on 26 October. This wonderful adaptation of the well-known, classic novel was written by Prior Park’s own Drama teacher, Mr James Graham Brown, who also helped to coordinate the show on the night with the assistance of Iestyn Griffiths on lights and theatre support. Mr Graham Brown’s script even managed to link in the theme of the night into the script, through exploring Mr Rochester’s “second sight” into the final moments of the play. On the night, Ali Campbell gave an enthralling performance, juggling the character changes seamlessly with a few, simple props and an extraordinary range of accents.

Ali Campbell, the star of this award-winning, one-woman show, who has been touring the country with this adaptation, kindly gave her time for free for this special performance. She stated, “It is the very least I can do when you think that Sally Webber gives up weeks at a time to travel to India and train staff so that vital cataract operations can be performed safely.”

Second Sight is a charity with close links to Bath and is spearheaded by Dr Sally Webber, an eye surgeon at Royal United Hospital. The charity aims to raise money in order to eradicate blindness through cataracts in India’s two poorest provinces by 2020. Arundell House adopted the charity following an impassioned talk by Dr Webber herself, in which she revealed that a million people in Bihar and its neighbouring province suffer blindness due to cataracts.

The sum of £5000 was raised through a combination of ticket sales directly through the school and via the Festival Box Office, gift-aided donations, the selling of refreshments, and a promises auction headed by Dr Webber.

Mrs Clare Ford, Arundell Housemistress, has congratulated James Graham Brown and Sally Webber for being instrumental in such a fantastic evening, which she has described as “…a resounding success on many levels.”