Debut concert for the West Suffolk Hospital choir in Bury St Edmunds

Dr Phillippa Lawson, respiratory consultant at the West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, leading the ho

Dr Phillippa Lawson, respiratory consultant at the West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, leading the hospital staff choir. - Credit: Archant

The debut concert for the West Suffolk Hospital choir, which was founded by one of its consultants, is due to take place in Bury St Edmunds, later this month.

It is being held at St Mary’s Church, in the town centre, to help raise funds for the hospital’s palliative care services.

Dr Phillippa Lawson, respiratory consultant at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, founded the choir, called Lift, in March 2017, as a way of helping staff to de-stress and support their health and wellbeing.

It has over 40 members of staff who attend weekly choir sessions held in the hospital chapel.

Enthused by their success, Dr Lawson decided to organise a concert, which is being held on Thursday, November 30, between 7pm and 9pm, and recently affected by bereavement she wanted to help raise funds for the Trust’s palliative care services.

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Dr Lawson said: “It is a concert of remembrance for anyone who has lost someone any time, any place or who has been touched by loss through others.

“We want to remember, to celebrate those lives and to tell people that they are not alone. Staff at our hospital care and continue to care, and are here for our community.

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“Choir members really enjoy getting together each week to sing and are looking forward to performing for such an important cause. We hope to support a new patient choir too.”

Lift are planning to sing well-known classics at the concert, entitled “Remember”, including “Fix You” by Coldplay, “City of Stars” from the Oscar-winning film “La La Land”, “Rise Up” by Andra Day and a selection of songs from the hit musical “Les Misérables”. Dr Lawson will also be singing a song she wrote in her early 20s when her father died.

Concert tickets are £10 for adults and £3 for children aged 12 and under.

They can be purchased in via JustGiving:

Any proceeds made from ticket sales will go towards palliative care via the hospital’s My WiSH charity Butterfly Fund, and a patient choir to support patients’ wellbeing.

Sue Smith, fundraising manager for West Suffolk Hospital’s My WiSH charity, said: “Whilst hospitals are about making people better and welcoming new life, they are also a place where people receive end of life care.

“It is so important that our hospital can provide palliative care that helps our patients’ live as well as possible until they die and supports those around them during what is a very difficult time.

“It is very special that our staff and community can come together in this way to remember those loved ones they have lost, and also to raise money for their local hospital. It will be a very moving evening.”

Tickets can also be pre-ordered to be collected and paid for on the door by calling 01284 712952 or bought on the night.

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