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Rotary variety show raises £4,000 for charity

FROME’S Rotary Clubs’ ‘One Night Only’ variety show earlier this month was hailed a huge success, with over 400 people in attendance and more than £4,000 raised for charity.

Organiser Gill Barnes reports, “Over 400 variety enthusiasts enjoyed an evening of song, dance and comedy on Saturday 4th March.

“Debbie Haines’ wonderful Danceworks opened the show reminding us of the success that this group has achieved.

“The first voice we heard was Humphrey Barnes B.E.M introducing David Millard, who, this year notches up 40 years of compering ‘the Woodlanders’, the longest running Musical Hall in the West.  They gave us sketches on cricket, seaside and a ‘UKE’ act showed us how many of them play the Ukulele.

“Their other stalwarts – Graham Harding, Grayson Pattinmore and Glyn Carpenter (who wrote and presented a very clever monologue on ‘Pubs in Frome’) provided the comedy. Sad for me was to hear that the Beckington Mole Catchers are hanging up their traps.  Phil Cary, Stuart Barnes and John Hayward were as raucous as ever.  We will miss them

“The Pink Champagne ladies sang beautifully and were as bubbly and intoxicating as their name suggests.

“Marcus Smith (guitar), Charlotte Hocking and Laura Hocking reminded us that ‘Frome’s got Talent’ and ‘Rotary Young Musicians’ are excellent vehicles for seeking out and encouraging young people to perform.

“Spellbound and the Frome Memorial Theatre Company, all word perfect, note perfect and so full of energy and enthusiasm, were a huge part of this production.

“My favourite act was the sketch first performed on TV by John Cleese, Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett. Humphrey Barnes, Phil Cary and Grayson Pattinmore did it so well – reminding us of their social standing in the community – ‘I look up to him and I look down on him etc’.

“The programme itself was beautifully prepared and printed by Wayne Kelly – our youngest Rotarian.  We all hope we will not need his services for many years – he runs Clarksons Funeral Directors.

“The finale reminded us just how many artists had taken part – from the very young to the quite old.  David Millard thanked Kerry Bishop and the musicians,  Frome Selwood Rotary for organising the raffle (over £600),  Inner Wheel for selling the programmes and the Memorial staff for all their help and cooperation.”

Gill was also thanked for directing an excellent evening of entertainment.

David Millard said, “Without Gill, this show would just not have happened.”

Gill added, “Several references were made to the New Year’s Honours, Humphrey Barnes’ B.E.M was as deserved as any medal the Queen has ever given.

“Humphrey and I just have to look at the Theatre – both inside and out – to remember how it was 25 years ago, and realise, with the support of so many others, just how much has been achieved.

“Around £4,000 was raised for the two Rotary Clubs reminding us to seek other projects with which we can work together.”