MORE than 200 singers from five male voice choirs packed Huddersfield Town Hall stage in a concert to raise money to build a children’s hospice in the town.

The concert featured singers from male voice choirs at Gledholt, Colne Valley, Skelmanthorpe, New Mill and Elland.

They were conducted by Malcolm Fairless, former conductor of Gledholt, helped by Sue Christie.

Top local brass band YBS shared the stage under the baton of musical director Morgan Griffiths, who also led the joint items by choir and band.

Norma Walker was the soloist in Wood’s Fantasia on British Sea Songs, which helped bring the concert to a rousing finish.

The concert was the brainchild of John Topham, who sings with Gledholt Male Voice Choir and is also a member of Colne Valley Lions.

He wanted to raise money for the West Yorkshire Forget-Me-Not Trust and turned to friends in the world of male voice choirs and the Lions to help.

Both groups came up trumps, with the choirs fielding a mass of singers who after just one joint rehearsal turned in a warm, well-sung performance which delighted the three mayors who had turned out to support the event.

The Lions ran a raffle, helped with organisation and sold programmes on the night.

The Forget-Me-Not Trust is the charity chosen this year by both the current Mayor of Kirklees, Clr Jean Calvert, and by the Mayor of Todmorden, Pam Lally.

Both were at the concert along with the Mayor of Calderdale, Clr Martin Peel, whose area will be covered by the children’s hospice in Huddersfield.

The event was compered by radio presenter Paul Clark of Pennine FM and the accompanist was John S Bailey.

The choirs sang a diverse range, from male voice favourites to popular songs and ballads.

One of the highlights was the singing of Evening Pastorale, during which the hall lights were dimmed and the only glow came from twinklers worn by choir and audience, who were all invited to think of the sick children in the area for whom a hospice would provide vital care.