CLIC for Christmas at Clifton’s charity week

Staff and customers at the Clifton have been raising money throughout the year for children's cancer charity, CLIC Sargent

Magic, movies, comedy, grottos and fancy dress – there’s something for the whole family this Christmas at one of Sedgley’s most popular pubs.

And, as well as having fun, visitors to JD Wetherspoon pub, the Clifton, this festive season, will be raising vital funds for leading children’s cancer charity, CLIC Sargent.

Suzanne Nickl, who is organising this year’s event, says: “Our previous efforts to raise money for CLIC Sargent have been a huge success, so we wanted to build on that and promote the excellent work carried out by this charity, while providing a great range of entertainment for customers of all ages. We want everyone to join in, have fun and help raise funds for a very worthy cause.”

The packed programme of events gets underway on Monday, December 19 at 2pm, when a children’s entertainer will put smiles on the faces of youngsters and their families.

This is followed at 7pm by a movie marathon, where customers can relax with their favourite food and drink while enjoying a great selection of films including some festive favourites.

Garden grotto

On Tuesday, December 20, from 2pm, youngsters can get into the festive spirit by making their own tree decorations, while at 5pm, the Clifton’s garden grotto will be unveiled, featuring a stall selling hot roasted chestnuts and jacket potatoes.

Wednesday, December 21, sees a packed programme of events beginning with a special Christmas party for youngsters at 2pm, where there will be tasty treats and party games aplenty.

This is followed at 6pm by an incredible display of trickery from Sedgley-based magician Colin Tighe, while at 8pm, budding comedians are invited to take the spotlight for the Clifton Christmas comedian open mic event. Anyone interested in entering can see a member of staff for details on how to apply.

Thursday, December 22, may be the shortest day on the calendar, but there’s still plenty of time for youngsters to make their own Christmas cards and post their letters to Santa from 2pm till 4pm.

As the big day draws near, Santa will be opening his grotto on Friday, December 23. At this event, which runs from 2pm until 4pm, youngsters will not only be able to meet the big man himself, they’ll also receive a gift for every donation to CLIC Sargent.

Pyjama party

From 7pm, it’s time for grown-ups to enter into the spirit of the season, with the Clifton’s Friday festive pyjama party. Despite encouraging everyone to arrive dressed in their nightwear, Suzanne and her team promise this will be anything but a sleepy occasion, with festive shots on offer for £1 and all monies raised going to CLIC. The first 10 people to arrive in fancy dress will also get a free jelly shot to help them get into the party mood.

On Saturday, December 24, grown-ups can enter into a little seasonal sauciness with the Clifton’s sexy Santa Saturday event. Customers are encouraged to come along and sparkle in their best party outfits, while enjoying festive shots for £1. As with the pyjama party, the first 10 people dressed up will receive a free jelly shot and all money raised will be going to CLIC Sargent.

Registered charity CLIC Sargent is dedicated to helping children with cancer and their families. Every day, 10 families are told their child has the disease and, as the UK’s leading children’s cancer charity, CLIC Sargent is the only organisation to offer them all round care and support. Visit their website for more information.

Visit the Clifton’s Facebook page for more information on the pub’s forthcoming events. Suzanne has also set up a page, Christmas CLIC Week at the Clifton, dedicated to the fun-packed programme of events taking place in the run up to the big day.

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Staff at The Clifton spill the beans for charity

Siana Palmer, left, and Charlotte Jordan, right, are feeling full of beans

Baked beans will definitely be off the menu in future for two members of staff at a popular Sedgley pub.

Because, to raise money for children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent, Siana Palmer and Charlotte Jordan, who both work at Wetherspoon pub, The Clifton, spent five hours sharing a bathtub full of the tasty tinned dish.

“I wouldn’t mind, but I don’t actually like baked beans,” joked Charlotte, who, along with Siana, took the plunge into tomato sauce at 12 noon on Tuesday, August 30.

Despite their pulse predicament, the two girls spent until 5pm that day happily chatting to customers, friends and family members, while other members of staff brought them ample supplies of chocolates and magazines to make their fundraising feat a little more bearable.

Preparing for the event was tricky, since, unsurprisingly, neither of the two had ever sat in a bathtub full of beans before.

“I was getting ready thinking ‘what on Earth should I wear for this?'” explained Siana, “and, in the end, I decided the most important thing was a pair of socks so my feet didn’t get cold!”

However, despite wearing socks, both girls said the bath, which took 46 2.62 kg tins of baked beans to fill, felt decidedly chilly after five hours spent sitting in it. And, instead of a hot shower, the girls had a cold jet wash to look forward to at the end of their ordeal.

“I figured we’d already be cold, so getting blasted with icy water wouldn’t really make too much difference,” said Charlotte.

The event, which raised £57 in total, was part of a fundraising fortnight held at the pub to raise money for CLIC Sargent.

Organiser Janine Jordan, team leader at The Clifton, said that during their first hour immersed in beans, Charlotte and Siana had already raised £15, while the amount raised through other events at the pub was now more than £1,000.

The fun continues throughout the week, with a variety of other events including a paranormal supper on Wednesday, August 31, from 7pm.

Magician’s family fun day CLIC-ks with Clifton customers

Magician Colin Tighe dazzles youngsters with a card trick

Families at The Clifton were treated to a magical performance this Thursday, August 25, when local illusionist Coling Tighe dropped in to dazzle his audience and raise funds for charity.

The event was part of a fortnight of activities organised at the JD Wetherspoon pub in aid of children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent and proved to be a huge hit with customers of all ages.

“Our last event raised £2,035 for CLIC Sargent, so this year, we’re hoping to do even better,” says Janine Jordan, event organiser and team leader at the popular venue in Sedgley’s Bull Ring.

She adds: “We know people don’t always have a lot of spare cash to donate to charity, so we like to keep them entertained and give them something for their money.”

During Colin’s performance, his young audience looked on in wonder as he produced an impossibly long string of paper from his mouth, produced a colouring book that mysteriously coloured itself in and performed an amazing card trick where his participant’s chosen card was hidden inside an orange.

Sam Davenport, manager at The Clifton, was similarly impressed, saying:

“Colin’s an amazing performer and a huge hit with our customers.”

This event is part of a packed programme of entertainment planned during the charity fortnight, which includes staff sitting in a bath full of baked beans, a silent disco and a paranormal supper night next Wednesday, August 31 at 7pm, where a team of dedicated ghosthunters will investigate the former cinema’s upstairs area.

Once again, the event – which is now in its third year – has been supported by the Sedgley branch of Barclays, who have pledged to match any amount raised.

“The staff at Barclays pop in regularly for coffee,” explains Janine, “and they’re always happy to help raise funds so that CLIC Sargent can continue their excellent work.”

Sedgley magician Colin Tighe comes up trumps for charity

Colin Tighe performing an amazing card trick in the Beacon Hotel

Drinkers in pubs throughout Sedgley are used to people coming round collecting for charity, but one local magician and comedian has come up with a spellbinding method of raising funds to help others.

In order to raise money for children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent, Colin Tighe is performing a range of baffling card tricks for customers at Sedgley’s Wetherspoon pub, The Clifton, this Thursday, August 25.

And, in preparation for this event, the talented magician and comedian treated regulars at the Beacon Hotel to an impromptu display of trickery on Sunday evening.

Colin, aged 28, has been perfecting card tricks since the age of 16, when a visit to a magic shop in Leamore, Bloxwich, inspired him to take his first foray into the secretive world of illusion.

“I bought £20 of tricks that day, but when I got home and tried them, I couldn’t understand why they didn’t work,” he laughs.

“So, I went back to the shop the following week, where the guy behind the counter showed me how to perfect the tricks – he was a great inspiration to me in those days.”

Over time, Colin’s skills as a magician grew, although his family didn’t always take his hobby seriously.

“I loved watching magicians such as David Copperfield and Lance Burton on TV, but my dad, who wasn’t really into magic, wouldn’t always allow me to – he thought it was a bit silly,” explains Colin.

However, the young illusionist persevered, perfecting his tricks until he felt confident enough to perform them in bars across Wolverhampton.

“I’d go to the shop to buy tricks, then learn them on the bus going back to Sedgley,” he recalls. “Then, I’d go to places such as the Old Still and the Civic to try them out on people.

“I remember going into the Cobra Club and showing the girls who worked there card tricks,” he adds cheekily,  “and, there was a really funny time at the Civic, where the doorman searched my pockets and pulled out a bra (for a trick) and a collection of sponge balls!”

Colin, it seems, is never without props for his hilarious and often perplexing magic tricks.

While doing this interview for Sedgleyscene, he shuffles a pack of cards and then asks us to choose one – the king of spades.

He then shuffles the pack once more and pulls out what he thinks is my chosen card. However, when this turns out to be the ace instead, an apparently crestfallen Colin breaks off to answer his mobile phone.

Colin is raising funds for children's cancer charity CLIC Sargent

“Don’t laugh – my phone’s a bit old,” he smiles, before pulling a 1970s-style receiver from his bag. After talking to what he claims is the Magic Circle and explaining that the trick has gone wrong, he then hands the receiver to me.

“Of course, there’s no-one there,” he laughs, before asking me to unscrew the mouthpiece. Inside, there is a card, folded up. My card, the king of spades.

It’s an amazing trick and one which defies belief. Sleight of hand, distraction – however it’s explained, this is a dazzling and highly entertaining performance.

“If people like what I’ve done and I’ve connected with them by making them laugh, then it reflects on me as a performer,” explains Colin. “And, with regards to donating money to charity, it makes people much more likely to give.”

He’s not wrong. Colin’s half-hour stint in the Beacon on Sunday netted somewhere in the region of £40 for CLIC Sargent – something he aims to build upon during his afternoon performance on Thursday at The Clifton.

“Janine, the organiser of this event, is always looking at new ways to raise money for charity,” he explains. “So, when she found out I was a magician, she came up with the idea of performing tricks to raise money. I was more than happy to say yes.”

And, dazzling regulars at The Clifton is just the start of Colin’s commitment to charity. Next year, he plans to cycle from Sedgley to Cornwall, demonstrating tricks along the way to raise funds for the Youth Cancer Trust.

It’s clear this affable magician likes nothing better than helping others through performing tricks. And, this connection with his audience is what makes Colin stand out.

“Anyone can perform a magic trick,” he says, “but making it entertaining and leaving a lasting impression is more difficult.”

Colin’s tricks achieve not only that, but through raising money for charity, help leave a lasting impression upon the lives of many others.

Colin’s will be performing magic tricks at The Clifton, Sedgley from 12.30pm until 3pm on Thursday, August 25.

Visit his website to find out more about this hugely talented Sedgley-based magician and comedian.