Key Note Appeal for Cancer Patients
1st September 2014
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Fresh from their appearance at Bolton Food and Drink Festival, Bolton Cancer Voices are on the search for additional members as they now enter in to preparations for their exciting festive programme, which amongst other things will see them repeat their popular concert –  ‘Jingle Bell Sing-A-Long’ on 6th December in the Victoria Hall and perform in Manchester Cathedral.

Established just over 2 years ago, Bolton Cancer Voices is proud to be the North West’s only dedicated Choir for cancer patients and cancer survivors. Membership of this unique Choir is open to people at any stage in their cancer journey whether newly diagnosed and in treatment, living with cancer as a life-limiting condition or a cancer survivor irrespective of the time elapsed since diagnosis. Everyone is welcome regardless of where they live or where they receive treatment, as long as they can get to the centre of Bolton for rehearsals.

The Choir provides a positive, motivational and diversionary environment in which members can have fun, enjoy the challenges and exhilaration of performing and have a focus aside from their illness: it also affords an informal forum to meet with others in a similar situation and benefit from mutual support and understanding.

To ensure the Choir is accessible to all no singing experience is necessary; you don’t need to be able to read music; there are no auditions and no membership fees to worry about.

There is an appreciation that for some their illness or treatment may mean erratic attendance at rehearsals but this is not considered a barrier to membership, with organisers keen to ensure no one feels excluded at a time when they may be facing one of the most physically, emotionally, psychologically or socially challenging periods of their life.

The Choir works under the baton of Clive Rushworth - a popular and experienced Musical Director, who is passionate about seeing the Choir excel and makes learning easy and pleasurable no matter what people’s level of experience or ability.

In recent years singing has seen a resurgence in popularity thanks to television programmes like ‘The Choir’ with Gareth Malone and various talent shows but in addition to being a highly enjoyable and social pastime research has increasing demonstrated the health benefits of such activity too: a fact endorsed by the findings from a Survey undertaken of the members of Bolton Cancer Voices, where 80% of respondents reported that they felt they had benefited physically, mentally or emotionally from being in the Choir with 80% citing mental or emotional benefits and 60% physical; reported outcomes included improved breathing, increased energy levels, a more positive outlook and an increased sense of well-being.

With membership currently standing at forty plus, there are no less than 14 individual tumour types represented in the Choir, analysis showing that a third of members joined within 12 months of receiving their diagnosis - the shortest period being 2 weeks post diagnosis and the longest 55 years!

Though cancer brings Bolton Cancer Voices together it is not allowed to define the Choir, stand in the way of them having a full programme of appearances and activities or diminish the happy times and frequent laughter that accompany their rehearsals, which take place on Monday evenings at the Friends Meeting House, Silverwell Street, Bolton.

Karen Elliott, Chair of Bolton Cancer Voices said: -

‘This is a perfect time for new members to join us and we really hope that people feel inspired to come and experience the joy and friendship of Bolton Cancer Voices for themselves.

Singing is both energizing and empowering and the Choir provides something positive to look forward to; some ‘me time’ in which to indulge yourself and briefly escape the drudgery of hospital appointments and treatment. We come together as a group of people who love to sing and have all received a cancer diagnosis at some time; not as group of patients who sing – there’s an important difference!

Bolton Cancer Voices is about embracing life and living it to the full whatever your situation. We put fun and enjoyment at the heart of all we do, whilst continually striving to improve and ensure we put on quality performances.’

To discuss membership or arrange to drop in on a rehearsal contact Karen on 01204 595562 /

07773 164235; email

About the Author

Faz P

Member since: 10th July 2012

Hi I am Faz and am passionate about all things Bolton. I hope you enjoy reading my blogs and find them to be interesting and thought provoking. I would love you to add your personal comments to them. Dont...

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