PEOPLE with diabetes had the time of their lives at a Dirty Dancing-themed charity ball in Bournemouth.

The annual event, now in its ninth year, was organised by Dorset fundraising organisation Pop 4 Diabetes and took place at Village Bournemouth.

Over 200 people from across the country attended the glamorous dinner dance, with soap opera star Anita Dobson and internet sensation Jack Jones on the list of VIP guests.

Iris Board, from Poole, set up Pop 4 Diabetes after her son, Shane, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 11. She said: “It was an amazing evening and so many people were able to get together and form friendships.

“Every year we have celebrity hosts – Anita was overwhelmed and in tears at one point in the evening, and Jack dressed up as a waiter and pranked the DJ with a plate of salad.”

Anita added: “I had a simply wonderful time at the diabetes ball this year. It was an utterly charming evening, which raised money for a great cause.

“I felt so at home and was made to feel so welcome. The entertainment was joyous, as a lot of the children were sufferers of diabetes, and it brought tears to my eyes. I’m so happy I was invited.”

One of the main aims of the event has been to raise funds for continuing research into finding a cure for type 1 diabetes, and beneficiaries include global charity JDRF, the Diabetes Research and Wellness Foundation and The Faustman Lab.

Another aim of the charity dinner has been to bring together people with diabetes and their families. Iris said when her son was first diagnosed with diabetes, she felt lonely. “I didn’t know anybody else who had it and we didn’t have social media back then to help find others going through the same thing.

“Since setting up Pop 4 Diabetes, so many friendships have grown as we all have children with diabetes. I get such a buzz from seeing everyone come together at the charity ball.”

She added: “My son, Shane, is the reason I do this. He’s turned his situation into a positive. He’s been so committed to fundraising - he was awarded a British Citizen Award a few years ago.”

To find out more about the organisation, visit