Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Getting set for this year's Living Advent

THE Henley Living Advent Calendar is to return for a fifth year and will have more beneficiaries.

THE Henley Living Advent Calendar is to return for a fifth year and will have more beneficiaries.

The charity fund-raiser will involve 24 half-hour performances by singers, dancers and other acts each evening from December 1 to Christmas Eve at various venues.

Bucket collections will take place at each show for different charities.

Richard Rodway, a solicitor who is chairing the event for the second year, said: ?Rather than three or four charities benefiting over the course of the calendar we will fund-raise for a different one each night. It can be difficult to talk about the same charities and ask for more money from the regular attendees, so by having a different charity each night it will enable us to involve more. It?s fantastic since there is so much great charity work being done in and around Henley.?

The causes to have signed up to the event so far include Bishopswood Special School in Sonning Common, the Henley Regatta for the Disabled, youth and community group Nomad, Riverside Counselling, the Chiltern Centre for disabled children, Henley Music School, Sue Ryder and the Henley Festival Trust.

As in previous years, each venue will be partnered with a business or other organisation. New partners for this year included the Henley Literary Festival and the Henley Festival.

Last year, performers included Robbie Williams impersonator Marc Hockley and several choirs, singing groups, musicians, gymnasts and dancers.

On one night guests were invited to bring their dogs with them to a performance by the Henley Rock Choir in Mill Meadows.

There was also a film competition at the Regal cinema, a mini-pantomime at the Kenton Theatre and a special version of A Christmas Carol performed by Henley firefighters.

The calendar, which was first held in 2011, raised £3,350 from bucket collections which was divided between five charities ? Riverside Counselling Service, the Chiltern Centre, the Regatta for the Disabled, Headway Thames Valley and Camp Mohawk, near Wargrave.

In 2013, the calendar won Prime Minister David Cameron?s Big Society Award and a Towns Alive award from Action for Market Towns.

Higgs Group, publisher of the Henley Standard, is the main sponsor of the event and will publish a brochure with details of each night which will be distributed through the paper.

Other sponsors include the Head Partnership solicitors, CTC Aspire, Courtiers and Philip Booth.

The Henley Business Partnership and Henley Town Council are also supporting the event. The venues for each night?s entertainment are as follows: 1 Town hall steps; 2 Regal Picturehouse, Boroma Way; 3 Early Rider, Newtown estate; 4 Friday Street; 5 Leander Club;

6 Phyllis Court Club; 7 d:two Centre, Market Place;

8 Angel on the Bridge; 9 Simmons & Son, Bell Street;

10 Market Place; 11 Town hall; 12 Christ Church Centre, Reading Road; 13 Hotel du Vin, New Street; 14 Bull on Bell Street; 15 The Henley College, Deanfield Avenue; 16 River and Rowing Museum; 17 Town hall;

18 Delegate House, Hart Street; 19 Henley fire station, West Street; 20 d:two centre; 21 Henley Cricket Club, Matson Drive; 22 Market Place; 23 Market Place; 24 St Mary?s Church.

For the best daily coverage of this year?s Henley Living Advent Calendar with pictures, reports and video, visit

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