Tim Willetts writes: Our concert on 29 June, with Pandemonium Steel Pans, raised £1826 for Helen & Douglas House Children’s Hospice. Well done team, and thanks to St Lawrence Church and to our wonderful audience. Special thanks to Pippa, for the idea and organisation, and to Pandemonium Steel Pans. And we have discovered how good steel pans and bells sound together!
Pippa Elkins gives some background…
We have friends who recently lost their beautiful 4 yr old daughter, Ellie. Ellie spent her last few weeks in Helen & Douglas House Hospice in Oxford – the first hospice in the country to offer care specifically for children and young people.
From one of the audience…
In Chobham on Saturday 29th June, 2013, the church of St Lawrence was the focal point for two very special reasons: A Concert for Ellie which raised a huge sum of money for the Helen House Hospice, and a collaboration between the Chobham St Lawrence Hand Bell Ringers and a young Steel Pan Band called Pandemonium – in what is believed to be the very first ever union between two so different, and as it turned out, so successful a musical demonstration.
The handbell team prepare to play, while the steel pans stand ready
First, the Concert for Ellie, honouring and supporting the Helen and Douglas House Hospice, where four year old Ellie fought so bravely and so brightly to the end, and an audience of some 100 local people filled the church to show their appreciation. Musical director Tim Willetts had arranged a nice surprise, possibly the first ever surprise of this kind, when he shared the stage of the hand bell ringers with a young six-strong steel band known as Pandemonium. ‘Pantastic’ said the slogan on their van and that was just what it was … fantastically excellent and much appreciated by the audience. Even the sun came out in appreciation of their tropical Caribbean style.
The idea of linking two such different musical groups might have raised a few eyebrows and the audience’s enthusiastic response said it all. Could this be the start of something excitingly new?
St Lawrence Handbell Ringers would like to thank all those who supported the evening helping to make the concert such a great success. We are delighted to announce that all proceeds will go directly to Helen House as we had no overheads due to the generosity of the church, musicians and The Good Care Group who provided the refreshments.