Divas’ dazzling decade delivers £50k to hospice
Highcliffe-based choir Diamond Divas are celebrating after reaching a £50k fundraising milestone for the Macmillan Unit hospice at Christchurch Hospital. The ‘Divas’ pledged to support the Unit 10 years ago and since then, every performance, concert and care home appearance has generated funds for the hospice.
Choir co-ordinator Josie Spicer said: “Reaching £50,000 was a very proud moment for us all. Not least because during the last few years under Covid we were unable to perform, but carried on raising money by selling jams, pickles, plants and books at the front gates of various members and with the ongoing support of other local groups.
“To celebrate our £50k milestone, we held a Coffee Morning – fundraising of course! – in the garden of one of our members. More than 80 choir members past and present, our families, friends and supporters helped us make the event a great success, raising a total of over £1300 in just two hours. The cake stall sold out and the plants, books and craft stalls sold well. And the raffle raised £525, thanks to the many local businesses who supplied us with very generous prizes. The choir also performed a short programme, accompanied by Terry Hayden on his keyboard.”
This time last year, the Divas were desperately seeking a pianist after their Musical Director Jan Leonard moved out of the area.
Josie said: “We were so afraid that the choir would have to fold. But along came local pianist Terry Hayden who was kindly prepared to give up his time to help us and we haven’t looked back.”
A cheque of £1,385, the Divas latest fundraising donation, was presented to Neal Williams, Trust Secretary of the charity, by choir member Hazel Lovegrove at the celebratory coffee morning.
Neal said: “It’s difficult to put into words the appreciation we feel for the Diamond Divas. They have been by our side through thick and thin for a decade, continually giving their time, their energy and their beautiful voices to help the Unit. Their support is something we truly treasure.”
Diamond Divas will sing and entertain any club/group/organisation in return for a donation for Macmillan Caring Locally. The choir programme comprises light-hearted music. Every penny raised goes to the charity and the choir covers its own expenses.
Diamond Divas is also interested in hearing from potential new members. Rehearsals will commence on Sept 21 at 7pm, at the Methodist Church Hall in Highcliffe. To book the Diamond Divas or for more information phone: 01425 280367 or 01425 270864.