On 21st August 2021, Durham Castle will open its doors to welcome you to Castle Charity Ball: The Crystal Ball

 

~ Durham's Biggest Postgraduate Ball ~

 

Guests who peer into the crystal ball will be greeted to a fantastical evening of feasting and enchanting entertainment in this magical UNESCO World Heritage site.

 

Previous charity balls have featured lavish three-course banquets, large musical acts, silent discos, casinos, magicians, crazy golf, live action roleplaying, nerf wars, ceilidhs, and a range of photo opportunities and other acts.

Castle MCR have raised over £8000 at our two previous charity balls: Mythos (2020) and Camelot (2019). This year our chosen charities are Durham Foodbank, ARCH North East and Castle Community Action.

We are proud that we will be donating 100% of the ball profits between these three charitable causes equally†. We are also fundraising by encouraging attendees and others to donate to top up our total donation amount.

80% of the direct profit made from this year’s MCR charity ball will be donated to the chosen charities. In compliance with the MCR’s standing orders, 20% of the direct profit made from this year’s MCR charity ball will be added to the ‘future MCR charity ball insurance fund. However, the MCR will match this value (providing it does not exceed 25% of the ball’s operating expenses) and donate it to the chosen charities so the total amount donated will be equivalent to 100% of profits going to the charities. The donated amount from the MCR will be sourced from unused committee budgets from May 2020 - May 2021. If you would like a more in-depth description please contact the Castle MCR Treasurer at treasurer.castlemcr@durham.ac.uk. You can find a copy of our standing orders here: https://www.castlemcr.co.uk/documents

 

TICKET APPLICATION INFORMATION

New ball date: 21st August 2021

We have received an overwhelming number of ticket applications this year, with over 1000 people applying! We are still doing our best to sort through applications quickly yet thoroughly. 

 

We have completed Round 1 and 2 of payments for allocated tickets. If you have been unsuccessful so far in being allocated an ents/dining ticket, please keep an eye on your emails as you will be on our reserve list and may be allocated a ticket in Round 3 of payments.

Our reserve list is also open to those who didn't originally apply:

Below is the information about applications and payment

Ticket prices are as follows:  

A dining ticket shall include†:
~ Complimentary alcoholic/non-alcoholic drink at a welcome reception. 
~ Four-course meal in the Durham Castle Great Hall.

~ Access to a range of entertainment, live acts and food from arrival time to finish

across the Castle.

An ents (entertainment only) ticket shall include†:

~ Complimentary alcoholic/non-alcoholic drink at a welcome reception. 

~ Access to a range of entertainment, live acts and food from arrival time to finish

across the Castle.

† Subject to change as the event format is dependent on COVID-19 restrictions.

Following payment:

Once we have received confirmation of payment from Event Durham, your ticket will be secured.

You will also be sent a form to confirm table groups/plans in the coming weeks.

Important COVID information:

The MCR Ball Committee closely monitor the changing Covid-19 restrictions at both national and University level. We sadly had to postpone the ball from July 3rd 2021 to August 21st 2021 due to the COVID situation in Durham and the UK. We remain optimistic about holding the Ball to its fullest potential on 21st August. We will be in close contact with ticket holders to inform them if there are changes to the event format. 

Lateral Flow Tests (subject to change dependent on University and Government guidelines in August)

Public safety is our main priority and at Durham, we are operating a Lateral Flow Test to Participate scheme whereby our students test regularly in order to access many face-to-face components of our Wider Student Experience. Student entry to The Castle Charity Ball will be subject to a negative Lateral Flow Test result 2 days in advance of the event. To help us protect each other and the wider community we ask that all of our guests also take a Lateral Flow Test, obtaining a negative result in advance of attendance at the event. If your Lateral Flow Test is positive you will be unable to attend (please see refund policy).

Refund policy:

(As of July 2021) if you test positive for COVID via PCR Test or Lateral Flow Test (LFT) 2 days (48 hours) in advance of the event, you will not be able to attend the event. In this case, a ticket refund of 50% will be made after we have verified your proof of a positive COVID test, unless we/you are able to find a replacement and do a ticket swap.

(50% of the ticket price will be retained as not to affect our total charitable donation).

If you are no longer able to attend the event for any other reason after paying for your ticket, we cannot offer you a refund and you will still be charged for your ticket unless you find a replacement.

As we have been forced to postpone the event from 3rd July 2021 to 21st August 202 due to COVID-19 the 21st June restrictions not being lifted, ticket holders who purchased their tickets in Round 1 of payments were either: able to keep their place following payment OR apply for a full refund on their ticket(s) and alcohol (refunds will not be available for charity donations). As the refund window has now closed, we will not be offering further refunds due to the date change. Paid ticket holders are welcome complete a ticket swap (where they can give their ticket to someone else and inform us of the name change).

F A Q's

What is the dress-code?

Black tie. This could include red-carpet style dresses and black dinner suite with bow-tie. Think more formal than what you would wear to a party but less formal than white tie. Black academic owns are not to be worn.

What time does dining start?

Dining guests are due to arrive at 6pm (subject to change) where they will be greeted with a drinks reception and live entertainment. Dining guests will be encouraged to enter the Great Hall at 6:4 and dinner will start sharply at 7pm in the Great Hall.

What time does ents start?

Ents guests are due to arrive at 8pm (subject to change) where they will be greeted with a drinks reception and live entertainment.

Yes, we will be asking for table plans from all paid dining guests in early August. The max table size will be 12. The Great Hall will be laid out with long tables. You will also have the option to sit on a mixed table as an opportunity to meet new people.

Is there a table plan?

I have paid for my guest spot but they can no longer attend, what shall I do?

If you or your guest(s) are no longer able to attend the event for any other reason than positive COVID test after paying for your ticket, we cannot offer you a refund (unless they apply in the ticket refund period 29/06/21-08/07/21). However, you will be able to sell and transfer your ticket via a ticket swap. Please fill in our ticket swap form so we know exactly who to expect on this day. This is crucial for LFT checks on the door.

 If you have any questions on the ticketing process or the event, please email: ballchair.castlemcr@durham.ac.uk  

Follow our social media platforms to keep up to date with our plans and announcements:

The Crystal Ball 2021 (@castlecharityball) • Instagram photos and videos

Castle Charity Ball 2021: The Crystal Ball | Facebook

Can someone under 18 years of age come to the ball?

The Crystal Ball is accessible only to those of the ages of 18 and over. We will be conducting valid ID checks at entry. We apologise that this fact was not previously advertised. If any of your guests are under the age of 18, please get in touch at ballchair.castlemcr@durham.ac.uk to arrange a full refund for your guest.