goathland formby day 2017
£2000 raised for Prostate Cancer UK
The latest Goathland/Grosmont George Formby meeting took place on the weekend of 05 to 07 May 2017 and was another great success from start to finish. This year the weekend was focused on raising money for Prostate Cancer UK in the memory of one of our best and much missed friends, Alan Kershaw. Caroline Stewart has been planning this event for quite a while and endeavouring to raise funds for her chosen charity, before the weekend commenced, she had managed to raise approximately £800 through the JUST GIVING web pages. Caroline got the ball rolling on Friday night when she gave a talk on the two George Formby’s with the aid of slides in St. Matthews Church, Grosmont. For a modest charge of £3, one could learn all about the fascinating lives of George Formby Snr and Jnr and their family. It couldn’t have been a better way to launch a Formby weekend and Caroline gave a very enjoyable and interesting presentation of her favourite subject. On Saturday we all made the journey to Goathland Village Hall where for the second year running we would transform the hall into a mini Imperial Hotel to hold once again, one of the best meeting in the GFS calendar. The hall was full by the start of the meeting with local friends of Caroline’s being joined by many Formby people who had travelled from far and wide to help make the weekend the success that it was. As usual, Caroline had catered for all tastes, not only from a musical point of view, but also her bar which was run by the ever willing John Howard and Martin Fowkes and is always a great place to chat and enjoy a drink at very popular prices. In the concert hall we enjoyed all sorts of brilliant entertainers, especially some wonderful playing from Matt Richards both on his banjo-uke and then on his lovely ukulele/guitar. Gabriella La Foley made the round trip of almost 400 miles to give a brief glimpse of her talent before disappearing in to the night and for the first time we also had Paul Kenny, who again gave a great display of exactly how to play the banjo uke in the Formby style. We also had Grosmont’s finest in the Cordite Sisters who are Caroline on ukulele and her friend Louise Wootten on piano. These two ladies play in the local area and bring delight to all.After two magnificent raffles and a “Gerry Mawdsley” style auction, we learned that the fund had risen to close on £1800. The evening closed around 23:00 and all agreed that it was once again a smashing day for all concerned. The following morning many of us made for the Hazelwood Tea Rooms in Grosmont where we enjoyed a nice little thrash session before retiring to the Birch Hall Inn at Beck Hole. A great weekend was enjoyed by so many people - and all for a good cause driven by Caroline Stewart and inspired by our great mate, Alan Kershaw. Well done to all who contributed in any way at all, a wonderful weekend!I understand that at the time of writing, the fund is now at approximately £2000 - brilliant! Peter Pollard - 11 May 201

Alan Kershaw

Alan was in the GFS from 2011 until November 2015. `In that time he took the Society to his heart and the members, his new friends were swept away by his friendship, his lovely sense of humour and his willingness to do anything for the GFS or anyone in it. He was at Grosmont 2014 and loved every minute of the occasion, the people  and the lovely countryside