Music concert helps raise for Ipswich mother’s heartfelt pursuit

Julia Norman from The Ipswich Hospital Band teaches Lauren Straw, 8, from Cliff Lane Primary School

Julia Norman from The Ipswich Hospital Band teaches Lauren Straw, 8, from Cliff Lane Primary School how to play the clarinet. - Credit: Su Anderson

A determined mother has raised just under £20,000 for St Elizabeth Hospice in the year since her husband’s death.

Julia Norman from The Ipswich Hospital Band teaches Lauren Straw, 8, from Cliff Lane Primary School

Julia Norman from The Ipswich Hospital Band teaches Lauren Straw, 8, from Cliff Lane Primary School how to play the clarinet. - Credit: Su Anderson

Ipswich man Andrew Wise, known as Andy, spent a total of nine weeks in the charity’s Foxhall Road hospice before losing his battle with kidney cancer at the age of 41 in March last year.

Julia Norman from The Ipswich Hospital Band teaches Lauren Straw, 8, from Cliff Lane Primary School

Julia Norman from The Ipswich Hospital Band teaches Lauren Straw, 8, from Cliff Lane Primary School how to play the clarinet. - Credit: Su Anderson

His wife, Christina, 41, set herself the ambitious target of raising £30,000 for the charity to cover the estimated cost of Mr Wise’s time at the hospice.

On Saturday, a music concert featuring the Ipswich Hospital Brass Band and choir members from Cliff Lane Primary School, where Christina and Andy’s two children attend, was held at St Peters-by-the-Waterfront.

Mrs Wise said all 120 tickets for the event sold out so fast that they released a further 10, which were snapped up without advertisement.

The concert was organised by band saxophonist and Cliff Lane parent, Sally Hammond, and raised £1,100 for Mrs Wise’s campaign.

“The children really enjoyed it,” Mrs Wise said. “It’s nice for them to get all their friends together and everyone they remember with daddy.”

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The couple’s children, Oliver, eight, and Grace, five, benefitted from music therapy with Ray Travasso from St Elizabeth Hospice before Mr Wise died, and a track they recorded was played at his funeral.

Mr Travasso gave a talk at the concert about the benefits of music in aiding recovery and he performed an extract with one of his patients.

Mrs Wise said she did not intend to stop pushing once she reached the target, and hoped to put on four regular events each year, which the children could take ownership of when they were older.

“It will keep their dad’s memory alive and will benefit the hospice and anyone else who needs their help,” she added.

The cost of the event was covered by Gotelee Solicitors so all of the proceeds could go straight to the hospice.

To donate, visit tribute.stelizabethhospice.org.uk/andywise

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