Stevenage charity gala with West End cast in memory of Stotfold dad

PUBLISHED: 15:01 19 October 2019

Iain Rutherford lost his battle with motor neurone disease in 2015. Picture courtesy of Carl Rutherford.

Iain Rutherford lost his battle with motor neurone disease in 2015. Picture courtesy of Carl Rutherford.

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The family of a man who lost his brave battle with motor neurone disease are holding a charity gala to raise money for an association which supports research into the devastating illness.

Carl and Neil Rutherford are putting on a show in aid of the Motor Neurone Disease Association in memory of their father. Picture courtesy of Carl Rutherford.Carl and Neil Rutherford are putting on a show in aid of the Motor Neurone Disease Association in memory of their father. Picture courtesy of Carl Rutherford.

Iain Rutherford, who lived in Stotfold, was a pillar of the community - involved in everything from amateur dramatics and Stevenage Football Club to being a school governor and Stevenage magistrate.

In November 2015, aged 74, Iain lost his fight with motor neurone disease and died.

Since his death, Iain's family have been keen to raise funds for the Motor Neurone Disease Association in his memory, and will be holding a West End Cast Charity Gala in Stevenage on November 3.

Iain's son, Carl, said: "As a family, we were keen to give something back to the association as they had been so supportive to Dad and our family.

"As my brother Neil and I are both rubbish at running marathons, and due to our working background in the theatre world - I worked in stage management and Neil is a West End actor and casting director - we decided to use our skills to raise money for the MNDA in the best way we know.

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"In April 2016, we put on a charity gala concert at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage and raised £9,000, which we were delighted with.

"We are proud of what we achieved, and also immensely grateful to the 100 plus performers and crew who worked on the last gala - all generously giving their time for free.

"We feel the time has come to do another charity gala and, due to ticket demand last time, we have made a bold step to hold this year's event at the larger concert hall in Stevenage Arts and Leisure Centre."

Current West End performers will take to the Stevenage stage, including Alice Fearn and Oliver Savile from Wicked and James Hume from Les Miserables, singing songs from favourite shows and films. They will be accompanied by a 30-piece orchestra and 40-piece London school choir.

Carl said: "We are hoping a bigger venue will raise even more money and are setting ourselves a fundraising target of £14,000."

For tickets, at £30, visit gordon-craig.co.uk or call the box office on 01438 363200.

If you are a company interested in sponsoring the event, email carlrutherford2144@gmail.com

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