Who would be your dream guests at a dinner party? And what would be on the menu?
Those are the questions posed by author Tony Slater who has penned a book in aid of three local charities – RSVP: By Invitation Only.
Along with tips on how to host the perfect dinner party and mouth-watering menu ideas, Tony reveals who would be on the guest list for dream dinner parties hosted by well-known figures in the world of politics, business, sport and entertainment, locally and nationally.
And Tony of Garstang Road, Preston gets tastebuds tingling by listing the delicacies that would be served, from traditional fish and chips and rice pudding to exotic soufflés and mango kulfi. Drinks range from traditional Lancashire ales to champagne.
Among those who are featured in Tony’s fascinating book are ‘Masterchef’ presenter Greg Wallace and former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond. Preston’s favourite son, Sir Tom Finney, even made a contribution shortly before his death, serving up broth, traditional Lancashire hotpot and apple pie to guests who would include the Queen, former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and footballer Stanley Matthews.
Tony said: “I’m over the moon with the fantastic response I have had to the book. The choices made by the celebrity contributors have been fascinating and really make you think about who you would include on your own guest list and what dishes you would tempt them with!”
Tony has financed the book with the support of Edgar Wallace, from Preston Plastics, so that 100% of the purchase price of £12.99 will go to three charities – Derian House, St Catherine’s Hospice and Baby Beat.
Georgina Cox, Chief Executive at Derian House, who would serve Barack Obama and Marie Antoinette lobster with frites and salad, said: “I’m delighted to be able to contribute to Tony’s wonderful book, and even more so that a third of the proceeds will go to Derian House.
“I chose inspirational figures from history because they are an eclectic, articulate mix, who have all made a difference in the world and would make for a very lively and colorful evening.”
Karen Entwistle Baby Beat Manager said “We are enormously grateful to Tony’s for his hard work and determination in getting this book to fruition. He has worked so tirelessly on it. Two of Baby Beat’s Patron’s Mark Lawrenson and Ranvir Singh have contributed with their ideal dinner guests.”
Stephen Greenhalgh, chief executive of St Catherine’s Hospice – and one of the book’s contributors – said: “I was privileged to be asked to participate in such an innovative project alongside our patrons Bill Beaumont and Mark Lawrenson. I thoroughly enjoyed thinking about who I would invite to dinner and what we would eat. Food for thought indeed!
“The fact that proceeds from the book are being shared between St Catherine’s and two other very worthy local charities – Derian House and Baby Beat – is fantastic. It is thanks to the work and support of generous people like Tony which helps us be there for local people when it matters most, to provide specialist palliative and end-of-life care, offering people the best possible quality of life, and providing emotional and spiritual support to patients and their loved ones.”
Also featured in RSVP: By Invitation Only is Derian House ambassador and TV personality Steve Pemberton (who would serve scallops and panna cotta to Shakespeare, Mozart and Les Dawson), former rugby star Bill Beaumont, Childline founder Esther Rantzen and PFA Chief Executive Gordon Taylor.
• RSVP: By Invitation Only is on sale for £12.99. To place an order, contact Tony on 01772 200181 or 07703475258. Copies are available at Derian House shops in Chorley, Leyland, Longton and Horwich and the Baby Beat Shop in the foyer of Sharoe Green Maternity Unit.
You can also order your copy by calling: Emma Jacovelli at St Catherine’s Hospice on 01772 629171; Karen Entwistle at Baby Beat on 01772 524414; John Rullo at Derian House on 01257 271271