Dudley Remembrance concert saved from the axe

Dudley's annual remembrance concert has been saved following a public appeal for volunteers.

Two former Mayors - Cllr Steve Waltho and Cllr Dave Tyler - got together when it became apparent that the much loved event would not be going ahead this year, because of a lack of volunteers to organise the evening.

The Gentleman Songsters Male Voice Choir had not only been the central performers at the concert but had also found themselves taking on an ever increasing role in the events organisation which had become unsustainable. Cllr Waltho said:

"As a proud member of the Songsters, I fully understood their position. We give much pleasure and raise a lot of charity money via our performances. We have ex-servicemen in our ranks and have huge respect for the event which we have kept going for some years.

"But we said that 2018 would be the last time since as volunteers we could no longer give the ever increasing amounts of time to its actual organisation. Town Hall hire and other costs were also becoming a burden as we had to charge entrance fees to cover them."

The two councillors tried one last desperate media appeal for help and were pleasantly surprised by the response, including that of several volunteers with links to our armed services. Some fifteen people expressed an interest to help and Dudley College have offered their main hall free of charge.

A steering group has been formed, who have held two very productive meetings with officer appointments including former stalwart and master of ceremonies, Ian Rawlings, being appointed Chair of the group. Founder of the Duncan Edwards Foundation, Rose Monk-Cook, took on the role of Secretary and another former Mayor, Melvyn Mottram, volunteered to be vice-chair whilst his wife Margaret took on the role of Treasurer.

The concert is now planned for Thursday 7th November at Dudley College and will be free to the public. Further details will be released at a later date.

Volunteers are welcome to get involved. Anyone who's interested should contact Cllr Waltho on 07703 308 463 or by e-mail to cllr.steve.waltho@dudleymbc.org.uk.


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