A charity ball in memory of much-missed Cumbrian football star Tony Hopper raised £20,000.

The impressive amount was raised for the Motor Neurone Disease Association at the black-tie event in Carlisle.

The sell-out function at The Halston, attended by 230 people, saw friends, family and former team-mates gather to remember Tony.

And it proved a major fundraising hit in support of one of the charities that supported former Carlisle United and Workington Reds favourite Tony, who died in 2018 after a brave battle with MND.

“It was sitting at just under £17,500, but we got another donation on the night to take it up to £20,000,” said Ian Milburn of IM Events, who hosted the night.

News and Star: Tony on the big screen at the charity ball in the HalstonTony on the big screen at the charity ball in the Halston (Image: Jonathan Becker)

“That’s well past expectations. It’s a brilliant amount of money that will hopefully make a good bit of difference.”

The event last Saturday night saw a major raffle plus entertainment and games.

Mr Milburn said enormous credit had to go to Tony’s wife Sue for her tireless efforts in organising the night and arranging raffle prizes.

“Sue was absolutely amazing from minute one, when we made the decision to do this,” he said.

“She’s worked so hard and got some amazing raffle prizes. I can’t stress enough how amazing she has been.

News and Star: Sue Hopper, left, at the charity ball in memory of husband TonySue Hopper, left, at the charity ball in memory of husband Tony (Image: Jonathan Becker)

“Sue did a speech at the start of the night, where she talked about their time as family, the Hoppy memories they made, with a couple of videos.

“It really tugged at the heartstrings.”

Mr Milburn said the event’s sponsors Cumbrian Properties also deserved huge thanks for their support.

“Across the night we had some great entertainment from 3 River City, Studio A Dance Company and Mr Maggy’s Disco,” he added.

“I played a few games with everyone, trying to put a smile on their face, and the feedback has been really good.

“The only disappointing thing was Tony wasn’t there himself – he would have absolutely loved it. He was in everyone’s thoughts throughout, as he always will be.”

More money will be raised for the MND Association in May when a group of Tony's friends and family run the Rob Burrow Marathon in Leeds. 

For more information on the Motor Neurone Disease Association, click HERE