Gillian Bayford bought the final Oor Wullie bucket trail statue for a whopping £80,000 on Friday – before generously donating another £64,000 to ARCHIE.
Hosted by the charity’s Tayside fundraising committee, the sold-out ARCHIE spring ball at the Apex Hotel in Dundee raised an incredible £136,000 for its £2 million Tayside Children’s Hospital appeal.
In a gesture that left guests speechless, the six-figure total was then topped up to £200,000 by committee member and EuroMillions winner Gillian – who also announced that she plans to donate the Wullie statue to the new surgical suite when it opens.
The money raised from Friday night’s gala evening will help build a new children’s twin theatre operating suite, transforming the experience of children who need surgery in Tayside.
Hundreds of guests attended the event which was hosted by Glasgow Sheriff Lindsay Wood.
The Bucket Trail, which captured the hearts and minds of the nation in 2016, drew to a crescendo on the night, with the final statue – the appropriately titled A’Body’s Wullie – sold at auction amid great excitement.
Designed by Dundee-born graphic artist John Hunter Barrie, the statue was inspired by all 70 of the trail sculptures.
His outfit, the iconic dungarees and shirt, is painted red, the same as it is on the outside cover of the Oor Wullie Annual.
His black and white “print edition” namesake sold for £50,000 at the original auction in September 2016 to Garreth Wood, son of oil tycoon Sir Ian Wood.
Other items, including hospitality at both Dundee and Dundee United matches, a half-day ride with world-record breaking cyclist Mark Beaumont and bespoke jewellery were all auctioned for thousands of pounds by professional auctioneer Colin Slessor.
Bidders from as far afield as Australia all contributed to make the evening a special event for all involved.
Cassie Thompson, ARCHIE director of fundraising, said: “This was our first ball in Tayside and it was wonderful to see so many of our friends and supporters together.
“Everyone has been so generous with prizes, and their time, and we’re so grateful for all the generous bids on the wonderful auction items.
“Last night was also about updating everyone on the project and a reminder of why we’re raising money – to make the experience of having an operation as positive as it can be for the children of Tayside.”