Posted: 15.09.20 at 17:32 by Nick Hudson
GARRY Cook wasted no time in starting his tenure as steward of a Bedworth club on a charitable note.
Within days of arriving at Trent Valley House WMC he and wife Catherine set about organising an open air musical extravaganza for what has turned out to be one of the nation’s favourite foundations – thanks to centenarian Captain Sir Tom Moore.
Mr Cook moved into the New Street working men’s club on July 4 and fixed a ‘DJ Day’ for a month later in aid of NHS Charities Together, which has benefitted from nearly £33 million in donations from a public pledging cash for the 100-year-old doing laps of his back garden.
The Trent Valley August 8 fundraiser was an ideal opportunity to achieve a number of goals – a socially-distanced outdoor live music event that kept the club spirit alive as it emerged from lockdown and, most importantly, raised cash for the NHS frontline heroes who risked their lives to save others during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“It seemed the most appropriate at the time to have an event to help the NHS,” said Garry, a former landlord at the Old Engine in King Street.
“But it was all about abiding by social distancing rules which meant it wasn’t possible to dance – just stand and listen to the music on offer.”
Some 200 people answered the club’s call last month and paid an entry fee for eight hours of non-stop entertainment by six disc jockeys from all over the country.
Smiler G, Taylor Charlie Jack, DJ Moldie, Reggae Rita, Franki 5 Shirts and Kev Wise pumped out mainstream music plus reggae, basement, Northern Soul and RnB on the day.
The steward said: “The DJs came from Essex, Kent, Lincolnshire as well as Dudley and Coventry, and all gave their services completely free of charge.
“We also had a raffle and tombola and raised a total of £850.”
At the weekend the steward and club president Ian Wilson handed over a giant cheque to Annabelle Feetenby, community and events fundraiser for University Hospital Coventry & Warwickshire.
It acts as a membership charity collecting on behalf of NHS Charities Together.
Annabelle thanked the club for the event she was “sorry to miss” and said she was very grateful for its support.
She added: “Community donations are helping us come together to recover from Covid.”
For more details on the UHCW charity click here.