Flood concert raises thousands

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East met West as the town of Tadcaster joined to raise nearly £4,000 for the town’s flood victims.

The Grammar School’s Big Band raised the roof of the Riley-Smith Hall for a sell-out performance to remember by current and former students who were given a standing ovation.

HRH The Duke of York was unable to attend but sent an official letter from Buckingham Palace, which was read out at the start of the concert by Big Band member Ed Fothergill.

Under the direction of its leader and event organiser Gillian Hainsworth, the band played a selection of 25 numbers including Singing In The Rain and Cry Me A River.

Singing were ex-students Rosie Winter and Beth Stevens and current pupils Alicia Fletcher, Megan Day and Erin Wilson, who all thrilled the audience.

The highlight was a specially arranged piece of music entitled Tadcaster in Union, which had been arranged by Mrs Hainsworth.

It involved children from all three primary schools in the town, firefighters, paramedics, clergy, Tadcaster Albion FC and local football clubs.

“This wonderful rendition closed the first half and then was reprised before the end of the second half with audience participation and hardly a dry eye in the house,” said a spokesman.

A cheque for £2,200 was presented to Angela Rooke and Kirsty Poskitt from the Tadcaster Flood Support and Fundraising Group, being money raised from the sale of tickets.

The sum of £900 was also taken from the sale of Yorkshire Rose pins, donated by Buckley Jewellery London.

In attendance was the Deputy Lieutenant of North Yorkshire David A Kerfoot, the Vice Chairman of Selby District Council Stephanie Duckett and her Consort David Duckett, Coun Margaret Middlemiss, MP Nigel Adams who gave a speech at the end, and the Headteacher of Tadcaster Grammar School Martyn Sibley.

Compering were BBC Radio York presenters Adam Tomlinson and Anna Wallace.

Chairman of Selby District Council Richard Sweeting was unable to attend because of a previous commitment, but made it to the Riley-Smith just in time to present Mrs Hainsworth with a bouquet of flowers of thanks.