Introduction: the stand and deliver business, 1880-1920 -- Charity and the West End theatre industry. London charity and the West End theatre industry -- 'Help from the theatres': the theatre industry and the fundraising matinee -- Staging wonderlands: public charity events. Audacious, sparkling and sprightly swindling: the charity bazaar -- Staging wonderlands: charity costume balls -- 'Shoulder rubbing with celebrities': theatrical tea parties and garden parties -- The stage and war: theatrical charity in times of conflict. 'Killing Kruger with your mouth': the actress, charity recitations and the second Anglo Boer War -- The comforteers: actresses and charity activity during the First World War -- Conclusion: 'get an actress first. if you can't get an actress then get a duchess'