On Saturday, March 23, a sell-out audience of more than 500 people filled St Mary’s Church in Horsham.
They were there to hear more than 70 members of the world-famous London Welsh Male Voice Choir perform a very special concert in aid of the Motor Neurone Disease Association.
VIP guest at the concert was choir member, Bob Mountney, who was himself diagnosed with MND in 2018, but was still determined to sing at the concert, taking pride of place in his wheelchair in the centre of the front row.
Throughout the two and a half hour concert, the choir performed a wide variety of traditional Welsh songs, as well as some classic musical numbers.
Special guest performers at the concert included violinist, Matthew Jones, very ably accompanied on the piano by his wife, Annabel Thwaite, and local soprano, Sarah Coulam, who lost her own father to MND in 2004.
At the end of an already very emotional evening, everyone present stood for the Welsh Anthem, ‘Mae Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau’, before remaining standing to give the choir a richly-deserved ovation.
Overall, almost £7,500 was raised from the event, including over £2,300 from the retiring collection at the end of the evening, every penny of which will be used to support local people living with Motor Neurone Disease and their families.
Local branch chairman, Simon Edmands, who also helped to organised the event, said he was absolutely delighted with how well the evening had gone and the amazing number of people who had supported it in so many ways.
He said: “We are especially grateful to all the individuals and companies who made such generous donations to help cover the costs of the event, and also the local Waitrose store in Horsham for very kindly donating all the sandwiches and cakes for the choir’s tea before the concert.”
Motor Neurone Disease (MND) is a rapidly progressive terminal neurological condition which kills, on average, six people every day within the UK. It can leave people unable to walk, talk or even feed themselves, whilst their mind and senses invariably remain unaffected. Average life expectancy from diagnosis is just 14 months and, as yet, there is no cure or effective treatment.
The Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA) provides care and support to around 5,000 people living with MND throughout the UK, as well as helping to fund vital research into the disease itself.
Read the West Sussex County Times review of the concert here.