Don't miss a story sign up to Sidmouth Herald's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Singer Wally comes to the rescue of widow Dolly

PUBLISHED: 18:03 25 January 2013

Hello Dolly: Dorothy Bell and new-found friend Wally Cotgrave

Hello Dolly: Dorothy Bell and new-found friend Wally Cotgrave

Archant

A fundraiser called Wally sang to a widow named Dolly to stop lift her spirits on her first birthday without her husband.

Fred Bell had been a keen member of operatic societies in Sidmouth and Exeter, and his family wanted to make his wife Dorothy’s 90th birthday special.

Their daughter, Gill White, hoped to mark the occasion by having someone from one of the societies to sing to her mother - and the obvious song was ‘Hello Dolly’.

Gill spoke to Sidmouth Operatic Society’s former chairman, Selwyn Kussman, who recommended 73-year-old Wally Cotgrave.

The singer was won over by the story and battled last week’s severe weather to reach the lunch at the Belmont Hotel.

Gill said: “Wally did a superb job and it really made her day really special, because although Dad couldn’t be there it brought back some lovely memories.”

She added: “We were so thrilled with his performance and wish him all the very best for the future.”

Retired blacksmith Wally, of Winslade Road, has raised more than £18,000 for Help for Heroes, so he obliged to help the family of a supporter of another soldiers’ cause. Fred had been a fundraiser for charity Combat Stress, having suffered as a Japanese prisoner of war.

Other News Stories

Murder most foul is set to take place in the 1st Sid Vale Scouts’ HQ in a 1930s-themed ‘whodunit’ fundraiser.

Read more

Supporters of a legacy charity have appealed to Sidmouth’s business community to help get the fund ‘off the ground’.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:00

Don’t miss this week’s gallery of readers’ photos.

Join in at iwitness24.co.uk and send us your East Devon pictures.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:30

A centenarian from Sidmouth has become the star of a short documentary sharing her memories of growing up in the First World War.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:52

The East Devon Daytime Band has hit all the right notes to raise £100 for Devon Air Ambulance Trust.

Read more
Fri, 18:00

A project seeking to place up to 57 new blue plaques in Sidmouth is seeking support from owners of interesting buildings.

Read more
Fri, 15:09

A short film telling the story Sidmouth’s last fishing family’s ‘passion, loss and resilience’ got regional exposure on BBC One and is still available online.

Read more
Fri, 13:43

Emergency services were called to a crash near Ottery St Mary today (Friday).

Read more
Fri, 12:30

Council bosses will soon write to Sidmouth residents and businesses to ask if they will help to fundraise the £3.3million needed to pay for much-needed sea defences.

Read more
Fri, 12:11

Our Devon quiz is back for another round!

Read more

Local Weather

Rain

Rain

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 6°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications