Up, Up and Away…….

High-flying businesswoman Lorna Sumnall is taking to the skies – after winning one of the star prizes at Birmingham Press Club’s Christmas lunch – an event that marked the Club’s 150thanniversary.

Lorna, who owns a Staffordshire estate agency, won a flying lesson in a light aircraft, courtesy of Take Flight Aviation, which is based at Wellesbourne in Warwickshire. A former RAF training base, the airfield is now one of the busiest of its kind in the country with over 90 resident light aircraft.

Over the last ten years, Take Flight Aviation (www.takeflightaviation.co.uk) has grown from a single aircraft club with a handful of members to one with 15 aircraft and 200 flying members.

Lorna, who was a fitness instructor and owned, with her sister, a health club before becoming a residential property specialist ten years ago, said: “I’m delighted with the prize. It’ll certainly be an experience and one I am really looking forward to.”

Her company, Lorna Sumnall Properties, is headquartered in Lichfield and operates throughout Staffordshire.

Meanwhile, former Press Club director Beryl Williams won the other star prize in the raffle, the proceeds of which are going to The Lord Mayor’s Charity Appeal. Altogether, the prize draw realised £471.

Beryl won a day out driving in the countryside in a classic car supplied by Great Escape Cars, which is the UK’s largest classic car hire company, operating from its base in Worcestershire. Founded in 2006 by Graham and Janine Eason, the company started with just two cars – a Jensen Interceptor and an Alfa Romeo Spider. Now it operates a fleet of 40 classic cars for hire.

In addition to self-drive hire and wedding car hire, Great Escape Cars (www.greatescapecars.co.uk) also provides vehicles from the 50s to the 90s for corporate occasions and special events such as supplying cars for films, television and advertising.

Other generously donated prizes included a £75 voucher to enjoy a meal at Le Monde, Brindleyplace – just voted as Best Seafood Establishment in the Midlands

  • Afternoon Tea for Two at Café Opus, Ikon
  • Luxury PR goody bags from Clive Reeves PR and Cloud 9
  • A voucher for two dishes and two drinks at Digbeth Dining Club
  • A £50 voucher from Deliveroo
  • Purity Brewery Tour for two people
  • A £50 Hair Salon Voucher for Aesthetics Hairdressers in Solihull - A multi award winning salon.
  • A VIP Penguin Feed Experience at The National Sea Life Centre Birmingham
  • A Family day pass for two adults and two under 16's to Drayton Manor Theme Park
  • A VIP visit for four people behind the scenes of the BBC Birmingham studios at The Mailbox
  • A Meal for Two at the Jam House
  • A Literary Package for Christmas – two copies of John Duckers latest children’s book and two copies of a just-published history of the historic Fleece Inn in Worcestershire by fellow-Press Club member Chris Mowbray

The Christmas luncheon, held at the International Convention Centre, was sponsored by leading signage contractor Hollywood Monster (www.hollywoodmonster.co.uk), which provided special banners for the occasion. The drinks reception was sponsored by Deliveroo (www.deliveroo.co.uk), which provides an online service to deliver food from restaurants to a customer’s table. Its Midlands head office opened in Birmingham earlier this year.

Entertainment was provided by comedian Andy White from Birmingham’s Glee Club.

A feature of the lunch was a presentation of a traditional Press Club bugle to broadcaster Ed Doolan, who was installed as an Honorary Life Member.  Guests were shown a video, voiced by Brummie comedian Jasper Carrott, which displayed photographic highlights of Ed’s career and included clips from his broadcasts. A video showing vintage Press Club photographs (including one provided by a former chairman, Terry Field, of Club members and their families on a day trip to Stratford upon Avon in 1896) was compiled by Tony Adams Productions.