STAFF at stately home Blenheim Palace handed over a cheque for £14,500 to Maggie’s Oxford cancer charity after a year-long fundraising initiative.

Each year staff at the palace in Woodstock supports a local charity to help build relationships between the attraction and the community.

To raise money for Maggie’s cancer support centre at the Churchill Hospital staff held a quiz night, hosted a fundraising breakfast and staged a Midsummer Night’s Dream Ball.

In May a team will also be undertaking the Three Peaks Challenge on behalf of the support centre.

Sarah Morris, head of human resources at Blenheim Palace, said: “I am very proud of the effort and commitment of our staff to support such a worthwhile, effective and important local charity.

“Cancer is something which affects every one of us, directly or indirectly, and the need for care and understanding, both for the person with cancer and their families, is incredibly important.”

The cheque was handed to Maggie’s Centre fundraising manager Pip Dingle.

She said: “It’s been an absolute pleasure working with the team at Blenheim Palace.

“The fundraising efforts of all the staff will help provide vital support for people with cancer and their family and friends.

“From nutrition and benefits advice, right through to relaxation sessions and exercise classes, Maggie’s provides free support for people when they need it most.”

The centre is funded by donations.