A kind of magic

Billy West will be taking to the stage as Freddie Mercury for two fundraising events this week.
Billy West will be taking to the stage as Freddie Mercury for two fundraising events this week.

TWO charity nights organised by a Freddie Mercury impersonator in memory of his mum have been dubbed a huge success after raising thousands of pounds for charity.

Billy West, 51, wanted to feature in a night of musical entertainment in tribute to his mum, Edna Westmoreland to raise money for Hartlepool and District Hospice.

Edna was cared for by nurses at the hospice before she died of lung cancer on Christmas Day last year, aged 76.

Billy, a dad-of-two from Hartlepool, organised the event at Ye Olde Durhams Social Club, in the town’s St Aidan’s Street.

Due to popular demand and the tickets selling out, Billy agreed to arrange a second event the following night.

Both of the nights proved a huge success and raised just over £2,000 for the Wells-Avenue based facility.

Delighted Billy, who now lives in Scotland, said: “I am absolutely over the moon to raise as much as we have done.

“I would like to thank everyone who came to either of the events and helped to make them such a success, people were so generous.

“My mum would be extremely proud. The work the hospice does is absolutely fantastic so we wanted to raise as much as possible.

“I will definitely be doing more fundraising for them in the future, I am already planning something for September time.”

Tracy Woodall, chief executive at Hartlepool and District Hospice, said: “After the first date sold out, Billy was incredibly generous and offered to put on a second date. Our heartfelt thanks go to Billy for his support of the hospice.

“The events raised over £2,000 which is a massive achievement and will go directly towards providing specialist palliative care within the hospice.”