Theatre goers took a step back in time to celebrate the Edwardian era’s most famous music, opera and panto at a special show to raise money for the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity’s Purple Butterfly Appeal.
Jeremy Stroughair, a professional actor for more than 30 years, teamed up with Darren Johnson from Pocket Panto and sisters Rebecca Little and Helena Leonard from Little Pixie Productions to host a charity ‘Edwardian Cavalcade’ at Rotherham Civic Theatre in July.
The family-friendly show featured sing-a-long classics, such as ‘It’s A Long Way To Tipperary’ and ‘Daisy, Daisy.’ The performance raised the roof plus £1,900 for the appeal in memory of Jeremy’s mother, Maureen Stroughair, who passed away in January age 78 at Rotherham Hospital after battling Alzheimer’s disease.
Jeremy, of Swallownest in Sheffield, said: “We were really proud to perform the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity’s first ever stage show in memory of my mum, who many people knew as the owner of local store ‘All Types Electric’. Theatre is in my blood so I thought a show dedicated to her was the perfect way to celebrate her life.
“Thanks to everyone who attended and the amazing cast, who generously gave their time for free, it really was a fabulous show.
“It was lovely to see my mum’s friends and family in the audience and everyone singing along. And I’m sure my mum would have been too. I was a bit emotional at the end but it was a lovely way to channel the sadness I feel about losing her into something positive.”
The Purple Butterfly Appeal raises money to fund Purple Butterfly rooms, which provide privacy, dignity, space and a home-from-home for patients nearing the end of their lives, their families, friends and carers.
All the money raised goes towards funding the building works, specialist equipment and facilities for loved ones to stay plus a television, fridge, microwave and a kettle.
Rotherham Hospital currently has three Purple Butterfly rooms, located on Ward A2, Fitzwilliam Ward and the Labour Ward.
Jeremy, who compered the show as the ‘Chairman,’ added: “My family and I were so grateful that my mum was able to spend time in the Purple Butterfly room before she passed away. It meant we had the privacy and space away from the busy ward to say goodbye and to spend time with her when it really mattered.
“I hope the money we’ve raised from the show and the raffle will give the Charity the boost they need to raise enough money for a fourth room at Rotherham Hospital.”
Barry Mellor, Chair of the Charitable Funding Committee, said: “We’re so proud to have wonderful fundraisers like Jeremy and everyone at Pocket Panto and Little Pixie Productions, who are willing to go the extra mile raise money for our Purple Butterfly Appeal. It was a fitting tribute to Maureen and hopefully a memorable event for everyone who generously bought tickets.”
For more information about the Rotherham Hospital and Community Charity please contact Suzanne Rutter on 01709 426821 or via Charity@rothgen.nhs.uk.