Charity ball to mark 40th birthday of Horsham dentist who died six years ago

A glamorous black tie charity ball will take place this month to mark what would have been the 40th birthday of a popular Horsham dentist who died six years ago.

Monday, 2nd September 2019, 3:31 pm
Claire Burtenshaw SUS-190209-141917001

The Sapphire Ball will take place on Saturday, September 14, at The Grand Hotel in Brighton in memory of Claire Burtenshaw who passed away aged 34 on October 20, 2013, following a long battle with ovarian cancer.

All proceeds from the event, which has been organised by one of Claire’s best friends Karen Newman, will go to Cancer Research UK and Martlets Hospice

Karen, who also hopes the event will help raise awareness about ovarian cancer, said: “As my school friends and I started discussing plans for our 40th birthdays in the year ahead, thoughts as always turned to Claire whose September 13 birthday was always the first to be celebrated.

Karen Newman with Claire Burtenshaw (right) SUS-190209-141928001

“For anyone who has lost someone I’m sure you will know for some reason, even though every day can be tough, certain dates and milestones are sometimes that little bit harder and this year was going to be no exception for us all.

“September 13 for me will always be a bittersweet one as my first-born child Sienna was born 11 months after Claire passed away, the happiest of gifts brought to me on a day that I will forever wish she could have shared in person with my beautiful friend.

“It was out of this conversation and the wonderful happy fun memories we shared that the idea for the Sapphire Ball started, a plan to create a night to hopefully raise a lot of money as a fitting tribute to our glamorous girl next door.”

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Tributes to Horsham dentist Claire Burtenshaw

Claire worked at East Mews Dental Practice in East Street after she finishing university and fulfilling her dream of becoming a dentist.

Karen described her Claire as ‘an immensely popular, fun, happy young woman with a beaming smile, characteristic laugh and enormous heart’.

She also said Claire was a people person who loved to party and was the life and soul of every gathering.

The Sapphire Ball, named after the September birthstone, will take place between 7pm–1am and will include a sparkling red carpet reception, a three-course meal with wine, live entertainment and a DJ, raffle and auction prizes and some fun surprises on the night.

It will be compered by Ben Hillman from Channel 4’s A Place in the Sun and is sponsored by David Vaughan and McMillan Williams Solicitors.

Tickets are £75 per person or £700 for a table of ten.

To book tickets or more information about the ball, visit or email [email protected]