May 2016: Caring Lauren plans fundraiser for charity


CLARINET player Lauren Smithson is arranging a special concert and a skydive to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society.

Lauren, 16, is currently completing her GCSEs at Haslingden High School and the concert she is arranging will be after she finishes her last exam.

She also has very personal reasons for raising money for the charity as it affected her late great-grandfather and her other great-grandmother is living with Alzheimer’s.

A Great British Tea Party will star Rossendale Valley Sounds, where Lauren plays clarinet, her sister Abbie, 13, plays flute and her dad David plays trumpet.

She said: “I have been playing since Year 3 at Broadway. I wanted to do a bit of fundraising as the Alzheimer’s Society has helped my family.

“I came up with the idea of having a concert because Rossendale Valley Sounds do quite a lot of fundraising and I will also be doing a tandem skydive in October.”

Lauren_great grandThe concert will be on Saturday June 25, 2.30pm at St Veronica’s RC Church Hall, Helmshore, where the band rehearses. Admission is £5 including tea, scone and entertainment.

Lauren’s great-grandfather Roland Feltham suffered from vascular dementia, which left him paralysed and unable to communicate. He passed away two years ago.

Her great-grandmother Daphne Smith was first diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2004, but had showed signs of the condition back in 1998.

Lauren’s mother Paula said: “The Alzheimer’s Society provided much needed support to her great-grandfather Harry, which enabled them to live at home for a number of years following my grandmother’s diagnosis.

“Having witnessed these conditions in much loved relatives, Lauren wanted to do something that would help.

“She decided that she would like to mark her last year at school by fundraising for the Alzheimer’s Society.”

Local businesses have generously donated towards a raffle to be held on the day.