RAF band to play at Hunstanton charity concert

RAF Wyton Area Voluntary Band
RAF Wyton Area Voluntary Band
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A special charity concert is being held in Hunstanton this month in memory of the popular speaker and personality Chris Mackie, who died in 2014.

It will feature the fabulous Royal Air Force Wyton Area Voluntary Band and will be held at the town hall on Saturday, February 27, at 7.30pm, with all the proceeds going to the Norfolk Hospice.

The concert has been organised by Wing Commander (Rtd) Kevin Mackie, president of the Wyton Band (and its solo euphoniumist), in memory of his late father.

Many local people will remember Chris Mackie, who was well-known across Norfolk.

He arrived at Heacham as an evacuee in 1944 and, having no real place to go back to, he came to regard the village as his home, with the Proctor/Raines family, who took him in, as his family.

The feeling was mutual and they remained close from then on.

After a long career in the Royal Air Force, Chris returned to Norfolk in the 1980s, firstly to live and work at Felbrigg Hall, near Cromer, and then as an accountant in Heacham.

In the 1990s he had a long association with the Princess Theatre, and with the theatre club, both on and off stage.

He also became a keen student of local history and was deeply involved with the archaeological dig at Sedgeford, from its inception in 1986 until his death in 2014.

He amassed an extensive archive of material on Heacham, its river valley, and the discoveries of the Sedgeford Historical & Archaeological Research Project (SHARP).

During his last illness, Chris and his family received unforgettable kindness and invaluable assistance from nurses of The Norfolk Hospice, Tapping House, for which reason his wife Mary and younger son Kevin have organised this concert, to show their appreciation for everything the hospice team did to help during those very sad days.

Mark Shea, commercial director at The Norfolk Hospice, said: “It is a real privilege to have the RAF Wyton Area Voluntary Band performing to raise funds for The Norfolk Hospice.

“It has been wonderful to work with Kevin and Mary who have put so much effort into organising the concert in memory of Chris.

“As well as performing military classics, the band will also be performing songs from musicals such as Phantom of the Opera.”

For tickets, call the fundraising team on 01485 601 701 or go to the website www.norfolkhospice.org.uk. Tickets are also available from the Tourist Information Centre at the Town Hall, Hunstanton.

If you would like to organise a fundraising event to raise funds for The Norfolk Hospice please contact the fundraising team for advice and support on 01485 601701 or email fundraisingteam@norfolkhospice.org.uk.

The hospice moved into a new purpose built facility – costing £3.4 million – at Hillington in 2014 and it was officially opened by the Queen last week.