Photo: Holly Lapsley Fletcher performing at Greenbank
An impressive £3,000 has been raised for Queenscourt Hospice following a special charity performance by resort singing sensation Holly Lapsley Fletcher.
The performance at Greenbank, Holly’s former high school, saw her sing a collection of songs from her new album Long Way Home, paired with some of her earlier works which helped her shoot to fame.
Lapsley, who left Greenbank just four years ago, took time out of her nationwide tour to come back to her home town and put on an intimate acoustic performance as part of Queenscourt’s 25th anniversary celebrations.
The hospice has a close link to Holly’s family, having helped care for her grandmother in the final weeks of her life in the 1990’s.
Hundreds of guests, including a number of Holly’s former schoolmates and family, packed out the Greenbank assembly hall to watch her perform – helping to raise at least £3,000 in the process.
However the final total is not yet known with bosses at the hospice still counting donations made throughout the evening.
In an exclusive interview with Ollie Cowan, Holly – who had just arrived back in the resort from a whirlwind 24 hours performing in New York – revealed that the gig at her former high school would be one of the most nerve wracking that she has ever done.
Speaking prior to her gig, Holly said: “We’re here today to celebrate and support an amazing charity.
“Queenscourt Hospice has such a massive impact on the people of Sefton and West Lancashire – my grandmother was there just before I was born and they looked after her.
“She was an incredible woman who actually ran the hospital radio station at Southport Hospital before she got ill. She was very theatrical and musical – I never met her but I always wondered where I got my performing side from!
“Greenbank was where I first started to get involved in performing but I was never really a singer. I preferred to do a lot of acting at school but a few years ago I decided to start writing and producing songs which eventually got a lot of attention and here I am now!
“I have to say though I am so nervous! A lot of my friends and family are here tonight and I know everywhere I look I’ll see familiar faces! It will definitely be a nervy performance!”
If there were any nerves ahead of the gig, they failed to translate on stage as Lapsley wowed the audience with a number of her songs – including tracks from her debut album Long Way Home.
Dan Astles, a former Birkdale High pupil and friend of Holly’s provided the support with a solo performance at the start of the night.
He told our reporter: “I was made up with how the show went.
“When Holly first asked me to perform I couldn’t wait as I love her music and to play for such a great charity was fantastic.
“I was really nervous about the show before hand, but I thought it went really well and the audience was amazing. I’d like to say a massive thank you to Lapsley and her family and Queenscourt for letting me play and to everyone who came and raised so much money – it makes me proud to live in Southport!”
The concert was held as part of Queenscourt Hospice’s 25th anniversary celebrations. They opened the doors to the hospice on Town Lane, Kew, in June 1991 and have cared for thousands of patients from across Southport, Formby and West Lancashire.
Jane Royds, Director of Non Clinical Services at Queenscourt Hospice, said: “The Lapsley concert was a great way to start the series of events we have planned for our 25th anniversary.
“We are very honoured that she took time out of her busy tour schedule to do this concert for us.
“We really want people to help us mark our anniversary and look at the work that Queenscourt has done over the last 25 years and that we hope to continue to provide well into the future.”
Greenbank Headteacher, Ian Raikes, was one of the first to book tickets for the concert. He said: “Holly was a really talented girl; always quite individual with her music. She always took part in our school productions and she really shone.
“She loved school and because she was so talented she really thrived on every opportunity that came her way during her time here. It is probably that attitude that has helped her get to where she is now.”
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