Evening of popular songs gives life-saving charity a boost in Horsted Keynes

Donna Oxley, Chris Francis, Pat Fencott and Kevin Sexton in rehearsals for their charity event at the Green Man. Picture by Martin Oxley

Donna Oxley, Chris Francis, Pat Fencott and Kevin Sexton in rehearsals for their charity event at the Green Man. Picture by Martin Oxley

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Five friends with a passion for music are joining voices to raise money for a charity that helps save lives when emergency strikes.

‘An Evening of Popular Songs’ at the Green Man, Horsted Keynes, on Saturday, October 31, will raise funds for the Community First Responders – a group of unpaid first-aiders who respond to 999 calls.

Entry is free and a collection will be held for the charity. The singing will start at 8.45pm.

The friends – Colin Francis, Pat Fencott, Kay Jenkins, Kevin Sexton and Donna Oxley – meet every Wednesday evening at the Jubilee Centre, in Charlwoods Road, East Grinstead, and call themselves Chanson.

Colin said he hoped their wide range of styles from pop through to opera, musicals and love songs, would prove popular with Green Man locals and music lovers who would come along to support the charity.

“Our repertoire includes everything from ‘House of the Rising Sun’ to ‘Nessun Dorma’, with a dash of Dusty Springfield and the Eagles thrown in,” said Colin.

“It’s an evening of solos and duets. The contrasting styles of songs and music will make an interesting and fun gig.

“If this evening is a success, then we hope that it will encourage other venues to give us the opportunity to raise funds for good causes.”

The Green Man was chosen because it is Colin’s local and because it falls within the area covered by the First Responders.

The First Responders attend medical emergencies until a paramedic or ambulance arrives. Because they live locally – operating within a three mile radius of their homes – they can reach patients within half the time of an ambulance.

They aim to bridge the gap between the time when the 999 call is made and when paramedics arrive and, because time is often so important, this can make the difference in life-or-death situations, especially in the case of cardiac arrest.

The First Responders are completely self-funded and money raised will help to pay for training and equipment.

Colin said: “We’re very grateful to the Green Man for allowing us to sing for the First Responders. It’s a brilliant charity that all of us may need one day.

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