With summer upon us, Christmas may seem a long way off, but for Lady Elsie and our Foundation, there are some very good reasons for celebrating by pulling a cracker now.

Lady Elsie with Jonathan Wallis

Every December, Christmas at the Cathedral attracts some of the region’s biggest names in music, TV, comedy, sport and entertainment, who give up their time to support our charity by performing alongside local school choirs and talented young people at St Nicholas’ Cathedral in Newcastle.

Last year was the eighth Christmas at the Cathedral and, this week, the team behind it announced it had raised a record £7,900 in 2019 to support the work of the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

Organised by Jonathan Wallis, from Barnard Castle, and with a dedicated behind-the-scenes production team including Lindisfarne’s Ray Laidlaw, the fundraising event marks a very special coming together of established and emerging talent.

Viktoria Kay

Growing in popularity annually, Lady Elsie describes it as one of her favourite nights of the year and this year’s event featured Jimmy Nail, Billy Mitchell, The Caffreys, Charlie Hardwick, Viktoria Kay, Harriet Ghost, Alfie Joey, Catherine Dryden, Jamie Brown, Helena Pearson, Andrew Scott, the Swing Bridge Singers, The Pebble Quartet and the Abbot Dance Theatre.

Ray Laidlaw says: “We’re all of us very proud of this event. I think the combination of Christmas, the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, the venue and, of course, the fantastic performers, is a really winning formula. To be able to enjoy an evening of festive entertainment and support this wonderful local charity is something very special.

Charlie Hardwick, Billy Mitchell and The Caffreys

“Last year, tickets sold out faster than ever before and I know for many of our supporters this night has come to be a traditional part of their Christmas.

“This year, because the Cathedral’s undergoing exciting renovation work, we’ll be taking a break. We’ll be raring to go next year though and the 2021 show will be one we’ll all be looking forward to.”

Lady Elsie says: “I’ve often said how much I enjoy this event. It really has become part of our family Christmas and I know there are lots of other people who feel the same way about it.

Alfie Joey

“I’m always amazed by the big names who give up their time to help and there’s such a lovely atmosphere about the whole night.

“I’d like to thank everyone who has contributed to this marvellous fundraising total for our Foundation by performing, sponsoring the event or buying a ticket. We’ll make sure the money raised is used in the very best possible way to help people who are facing cancer.”