JUDY Murray is fronting a £60-a-head charity event at her tennis champion son’s Scottish hotel – with just £20 from each ticket going to good causes.
A charity reform group has criticised the split, saying it was surprised that more of the cash raised from the afternoon tea event at Cromlix wasn’t being handed over.
But bosses at the luxury hotel near Dunblane insisted the £40 remaining from each ticket would go on covering catering, beverage and event costs.
Tickets for the Taste of Wimbledon event sold out in two days, with the promotional material promising it was in aid of needy children in Colombia.
Embarrassingly, the flyer for the event spelt the South American country as “Columbia” throughout.
The promotional leaflet makes clear that £20 per ticket will go to charity but the split has raised eyebrows because the champagne afternoon tea normally offered at the Cromlix costs £27.50.
Transparency campaign group, The True and Fair Foundation, suggested the event was more about marketing than charity.
The charity’s founder, Gina Miller said: “Usually when someone of high status is hosting an event they supply the food, drinks and the venue, with ticket sales going to the charity.
“If she’s doing it herself and having afternoon tea, that’s different, but either way, it seems like a bit of a marketing ploy.”
She added: “The wording is so prominent in the invite that it sounds more like a charity event. In this case I would have thought more of the proceeds would be going to the charity.”
The split even surprised staff answering the phone at Cromlix.
Asked why only £20 was going to charity an employee said: “I think that’s probably wrong. I think it’s the other way around – £40 to charity and £20 to the organisation.”
After checking with a colleague, she said: “Sorry, yes it is £20 for charity. We have changed rates for one day for the event.”
The event flyer reads: “Tennis star Judy Murray is bringing Wimbledon to Scotland with a sportingly themed afternoon tea at Cromlix hotel.”
It adds: “Raising money for international charity, Children Change Columbia, Judy will be hosting the event at the five-star hotel in Perthshire from 2pm on Wednesday 22 June.
Information about what guests can expect – Pimms, sandwiches and desserts – are then included.
It continues: “Speaking ahead of the event, Judy said: “I am really excited to be hosting this event. The tennis season is in full swing and with Wimbledon just around the corner, what better way to celebrate and raise funds for a fantastic cause than with an afternoon tea.
“Proceeds from the event will be donated to Children Change Columbia which supports young people in Columbia tackling issues of neglect, poverty and conflict.”
Judy and her family have donated to Children Change Colombia in the past due to the charity being close to the heart of Jamie Murray’s Colombian wife, Alejandra Gutierrez.
They have worked together with the Murrays in the past by holding fundraising events – keeping 100% of the proceeds.
Graeme Green, General Manager at Cromlix, said: “The Wimbledon-themed afternoon is an opportunity for guests to celebrate the tennis season whilst supporting a great cause. The event has already been extremely popular with tickets selling out in just a few days.
“Priced at £60 per person, the Wimbledon-themed afternoon tea offers guests much more than our standard selection including glasses of Pimm’s and an extensive range of sandwiches and desserts.
“£20 from each ticket sale will be donated to Children Change Colombia with the remaining £40 covering catering, beverage and event costs. The exclusive use of the hotel’s Chez Roux Restaurant will offer guests the opportunity to hear Judy’s stories in a comfortable and quiet location.
Children Change Colombia director Duncan Millar said: “We are extremely grateful for Judy Murray’s generous support of our work. Her longstanding commitment to Children Change Colombia, through tennis clinics and other wonderful events such as this Afternoon Tea, has enabled us to continue to support Colombia’s most at risk children to claim their right to a safe and happy childhood and a fulfilling future.”
Earlier this week it was revealed Andy made £16million over the past year and is the sixth highest paid tennis star in the world.
He bought the hotel three years ago to help draw in higher visitor numbers to his hometown of Dunblane.
After a massive refurbishment, the Cromlix opened in spring 2014.