It’s always heartwarming to see celebrities use their fame and influence to help animals in need. Recently, an unlikely pairing of two megastars teamed up for a benefit concert that raised huge money for a cat and kitten charity.
On Saturday, a private charity event in London was held to raise money for Celia Hammond’s Animal Trust. Founded by former model Celia Hammond, the UK charity is a refuge for cats and kittens of all kinds and provides low-cost medical treatments for cat owners unable to afford private veterinary fees.
The charity event was headlined by an unlikely pairing of two megastars: rock legend Sir Rod Stewart, and Oscar-nominated Pirates of the Caribbean star Johnny Depp.
According to the Daily Mail, Stewart rocked the house with several of his classic hits including “Maggie May” and “Forever Young,” while Depp accompanied him on Elvis Presley’s Red Hagstrom Viking II guitar.
Their combined star power brought in a lot of donations: the event reportedly raised $300,000 for the animal charity. Both celebrities were happy to help a charity close to their hearts.
“Celia’s devotion and commitment to protecting vulnerable and neglected animals is beyond admirable,” Depp told Daily Mail. “I’m so glad to be part of the evening’s success, and with the added bonus of playing alongside my friend, Sir Rod Stewart.”
“I’m thrilled to perform at this most intimate event this weekend with fellow musician, Johnny Depp,” added Stewart.
Depp also shared photos of the event in a rare social media post. “Thank you for having me,” the Edward Scissorhands actor wrote in his Instagram stories.
Depp, Stewart and Hammond are all connected by the late, great guitarist Jeff Beck, who died last year. Hammond and Beck dated for many years, Stewart and Beck were musical collaborators and bandmates in the Jeff Beck Group, and Depp and Beck were also good friends and musical collaborators — Depp was reportedly at the guitarist’s bedside when he died.
Depp and Stewart both appeared performed at two all-star Jeff Beck tribute concerts last year, and joined forces to raise money for Hammond’s charity.
“I cannot thank Sir Rod Stewart and Johnny Depp enough … for creating such a magical experience for us,” Hammond, 81, told the Daily Mail. “We are blown away by the support we have received which was desperately needed for us to continue our important animal rescue work.”
Hammond was a top supermodel in the 1960s, frequently appearing on the cover of Vogue. She used her fame to speak out against the fur industry, and also had a passion for helping stray cats: she would trap feral cats with her own equipment, have them neutered and return them — a “TNR” program ahead of its time while many feral cats were simply euthanized.
By the 1970s, she left her modeling career behind to help cats full time, and in 1986 she founded the Celia Hammond Animal Trust, with the objective of setting up low cost neuter and vaccination clinics across the UK. The charity also rescues and rehomes thousands of cats every year.
We’re so glad that this cat charity raised so much money for animals in need — thank you to Sir Rod Stewart and Johnny Depp for lending their fame talents to such a good cause!
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