The Research Steering Committee met again at the beginning of September. The Committee is made up of 18 members, many of whom are well known within the cleft community and with a wide range of professional interests and experiences. Applications for project funding are considered by the Committee and with their specialist medical knowledge, they then make recommendations to the trustees for their final decision on grants.

If you missed Rona Slator, Chair of the Research Steering Committee, sharing her thoughts on why research is so important for patients and their families, the video below is well worth watching. CLEFT has been investing in research since it began in 2007 and some of our successes have helped cleft professionals in their understanding of cleft care and how the condition is treated. We are always looking at obtaining funding from grant-giving bodies and some of the money we receive through online donations and fundraising events is spent on furthering knowledge through research. If you would like to find out more about some of the projects we have funded, please look at our website: Research projects | Cleft.

Fundraising update

We held our our first live event since before Covid at Thorndon Park Golf Club in Essex last week. The weather was kind, the course in peak condition and eleven teams competed in the tournament.


Pictured above: Some of our golfers enjoying some pre-dinner drinks (left) and our auction table displaying the auction items.

In the evening 81 people sat down to dinner before the prizes were presented and the raffle drawn. The raffle was so popular that we ran out of tickets! Brian Sommerlad (CLEFT Chair) gave an illustrated talk about CLEFT’s work. This was followed by a highly entertaining auction with lots that ranged from a beach hut in Frinton (where else?) to the loan of the latest Aston Martin DBX (pictured below) provided by Grange motors.

In all, the grand total of £6400 was raised. 

We would like to extend our sincere thanks to all those who attended and gave generously on the day, to all those who gave a raffle or auction item and to the staff at Thorndon Park Golf Club for their warm hospitality.

Online event: Harrowing Half-Term Spooky Breads

29th October 2021
A fun time to be had making these Halloween breads, perfect for a bit of half term fun with the family!  Broken Finger Stix complete with homemade blood dip, Fougasse Pumpkins, Spooks, Bats and Ghostly forms….


This workshop is great for all the family to enjoy during half term for a few hours of creative fun! Children must be accompanied by an adult.
Ticket price: £20.00.

Online event: Wine tasting

12th November 2021
Our THIRD wine tasting event will be led again by South African wine specialist, Gerhard Perold of Perold Wine Cellar. Gerhard has a great heritage connection within the South African wine industry and brings many years of expertise and knowledge to the experience.

Tasting Package - £55 for two people

Included: 3 x 750ml bottles of wine to taste (3 bottles is worth in retail value of £35.00), 3 x cheese selection, crackers, introduction to wine tasting session 1-2 hours. Delivery by DHL which is included in ticket price.

Online event: Celebrity Christmas Quiz Night

10th December 2021 


We are super excited to have the lovely Sharon Marshall back again to host our Christmas Quiz Night. Sharon is best known for her appearance as resident soap expert on ITV's This Morning show, but she is also a writer and journalist. During our quiz in July, Sharon brought a great level of fun and laughter and we cannot wait to see this again, even bigger and better for our Christmas Special! There will also be some celebrity guests who will be making an appearance throughout the rounds to ask some of the questions.

If you would like to bring a team, we just ask that you make a donation of any amount. Teams of up to 6 people. Sharon will again be judging the 'Best Named Team' competition on the night too - so think carefully about what you're going to call yourselves!! There will also be a trophy for the winning team.

It really was an evening of great fun in July and we hope that you will join us again to make this quiz even better!

DONATE £5, £10 or £30 to help either fund research or support one of our international centres.