A PAINTING commissioned by one of Britain’s biggest bands for their music album has fetched more than £10,000 for charity in a silent auction.

The Comet: Sarah Graham with Ricky Wilson from British band Kaiser ChiefsSarah Graham with Ricky Wilson from British band Kaiser Chiefs (Image: Archant)

Hitchin artist Sarah Graham painted the cover for the Kaiser Chiefs 2012 album Souvenir.

The band signed the picture, and Sarah has just sold the original to an anonymous bidder for £10,250. The money has been donated to Letchworth GC charity Garden House Hospice (GHH).

“The band said ‘why don’t you choose a charity, seeing as you did the painting’, and I chose GHH as it’s a small charity, a local team, and it had a massive impact on my life,” said Sarah, whose friend and dad were both cared for at the hospice.

“I don’t know how I would have coped without them and what the people there do.”

Sarah, who specialises in photo realism, was asked by friend and Kaiser Chiefs frontman Ricky Wilson to paint the picture, which depicts a stick of rock with the band’s name and album running through it.

The picture itself was supposed to be split between the group, which is why the decision was made to sell it for charity.

People interested in buying were asked to submit their bids through social media.

“I was using Facebook and Twitter and the bids just started to come in through email,” Sarah told the Comet.

“There was a bidding war between two people. One went to £10,000, and then he was outbid by the eventual £10,250.

“The hospice are chuffed to bits.”

Since the album was released last June, Sarah has remained in contact with the band and noticed some benefits.

“It has an impact on my career still – I actually met someone this morning who said ‘you’re the artist who did the Kaiser Chiefs’ cover’. It’s something that people always associate with me, and it definitely gave my career a boost.

“I’d love to do another album cover.”

The money raised from the painting’s sale will be used to fund essential operations at GHH, which cares for people with terminal illness.

GHH community fundraiser Jo Wiffen said: “It’s such a huge donation, and to come in all at once. When you get a huge donation like that, it helps ensure that we can have the doors open here for the next few weeks.

“We’ve never had anyone quite like Sarah do anything like this for us before, and the connection with the Kaiser Chiefs made it so special.

“The person who owns the painting is very lucky.”