COLUMN: Songs for Elsie was an inspirational local event

Ben Bradley, MP.
Ben Bradley, MP.

I recently attended a very special event in Mansfield, and I wanted to let everyone know about it.

Songs for Elsie was held to raise money for four-year-old Elsie Novell from Warsop, who has degenerative muscular atrophy.

That means that she’ll never walk, and over time she’ll find it more difficult to eat and drink, and eventually to breathe. It’s an incredibly sad story and as the father of a four-year-old myself it’s emotional to hear it.

There’s a number of reasons I want to share this story. The first is because there is an opportunity to help this little girl. She gets support to help her family adapt their house and get various other things that she needs, but it’s an incredibly expensive business so her family and friends are raising money to make sure they can give her the best possible quality of life, and have everything she needs at home. You can find out more and help by visiting their Facebook page, I’m sure that any support would be hugely appreciated.

The second reason is that this event was something that we as a town should be incredibly proud of. It was held at the St Philip Neri Church and was a choir concert featuring members and friends of the Cantamus Girls Choir. The choir, if you don’t know, is one of Mansfield’s very finest exports. They sing all over the world and came so close to becoming world champions at the Grand Prix of Nations in Latvia this summer. Many of the beautiful voices on display at this event were from graduates of the choir, and it really was moving and spectacular. There are some fantastic stories here too, and it’s inspiring and wonderful to think that there’s a woman from Warsop, Rebecca von Lipsing, who now leads the Stuttgart Opera and is performing with the best in the world. She flew back to support Elsie at this event and her success is absolutely inspiring – an amazing role model for young people locally about just how far you can go with your talent and hard work.

A huge well done to the family and their friends who helped to organise this event. It really was a fantastic advert both for the choir and for Elsie too.