War concert a sell-out success

Suffragette rally at Alnwmouth's Hindmarsh Hall. Picture by Rod Hardisty
Suffragette rally at Alnwmouth's Hindmarsh Hall. Picture by Rod Hardisty

Years to Remember, Hindmarsh Hall, Alnmouth, Friday, January 15.

One of a series of concerts to commemorate the centenary of the First World War was a sell-out success.

Years to Remember was a night of music, song and dance and was compered by Morpeth Gadgy Alex Swailes.

The event got off to a pulsating start with the marching in of the pipes and drums of the Northumberland C of E Academy CCF.

The group Mouthing Off, in the shape of veteran mouthie players Jim Smith, Jimmy Little and Peter Hollins ably assisted by The Mouthettes (Barbara Naylor, Carol Knowles, Esmie Forster and Margaret Reece) soon had the audience tapping their feet and singing along to popular choruses of the times.

The dance element of the concert was provided by Durham-based mother and daughter clog duo Rachael and Charlotte Dillon.

They were also joined by Highland Dancers linked to the Cadet Pipes and Drums.

Mary Hollins as Dolly Grey roused the audience in the second half of the show with songs made famous by the likes of Vesta Tilly and Florrie Forde and MC Alex Swailes sprinkled the proceedings with his vernacular brand of anecdotes and pithy incites.

The dramatic highlight of the show was undoubtedly the Suffragette Rally, which featured the Alnmouth WI Songsters, Simon Richardson on the military drum and Rosie Ross as Mrs Pankhurst.

The audience was reminded of the debt of gratitude owed to the First World War generation by Lt Col CGO Hogg of the Kings Own Scottish Borderers.

He read out the roll call of Alnmouth men who fought and died in the conflict and then recited, in full, the famous First World War poem “For the Fallen” by Laurence Binyon.

The whole audience spontaneously rose to their feet while Richard Stamp played The Last Post on the trumpet bringing the evening to a solemn and thoughtful end.

VPA helped to fund the concert and the event raised £193, which went to the Hindmarsh Hall Floor Appeal.

If any individual or organisation would like to commission the Years to Remember concert (or part of it), please contact 01665 830330 for details.

l The Alnmouth WI Songsters were the first Alnmouth WI to feature in the December edition of WI life with a photo and short article.

Alnmouth WI is one of the oldest WIs in the county and will celebrate its centenary in 2017.