Hornchurch Can't Sing Choir raises more than £2,000 for Alzheimer's singing groups
PUBLISHED: 15:00 16 July 2019 | UPDATED: 15:51 16 July 2019
A Hornchurch choir that supports people who've previously been told they can't sing is celebrating a comeback this year.
The Hornchurch Can't Sing Choir raised funds for an Alzheimer's Society group and presented its first concert since a new director took over, at the Holy Cross Church in Hornchurch in April.
They entertained an audience of more than 170 people with folksongs from around the world.
Tom Rodgers recently took over the role of director of music for the choir from John Morris who founded the group in 1999.
He told the Recorder: "The choir had been around for about 20 years and was on the brink of closing before I took over.
"This would mean the loss of a musical ensemble that its members valued greatly for many reasons - some for the social aspect, some because it gave confidence to their enjoyment of singing and some because it offered a lifeline away from loneliness."
Throughout the 2018/19 academic year, the choir raised £2,275 for the borough's Singing For The Brain groups run by the Alzheimer's Society.
The club supports carers and people living with dementia.
"This is a fantastic amount of money to raise for a local community group, particularly considering the social focus on dementia created over recent months," said Tom.
Doreen Gross, 80, from Upminster has a neurological condition and is a wheelchair user.
She said: "The Can't Sing Choir is my lifeline. It's a great morale booster and a wonderful stress reliever.
"This last year I've gone through a lot with my health.
"I can go there feeling really down and within five minutes I feel absolute joy.
"It's a nice sensation of belonging to a club. It gives us tremendous confidence."
This summer the Hornchurch Can't Sing Choir joined the United Singers for its performances.
They also performed at the Hornchurch Methodist Church on Sunday, July 7.
The choir has around 40 members and they meet weekly on a Wednesday afternoon at the Hornchurch Methodist Church in the High Street during term time.
It's open to anyone who wants to sing, and particularly those who have been told that they can't sing.