A Sheffield family will be at the heart of a touching tribute fund and concert launched later this year in memory of their ‘magnificent wife and truly special mum’.
Tickets are now on sale for a star-studded ‘Simply The Best’ concert at Sheffield City Hall on 4 October. The concert will launch the ‘BB with Love’ fund in memory of mum-of-three, Bev Croke, who sadly died of breast cancer aged 61 in March this year following an 18-month battle.
All funds generated by the concert’s debut at the iconic 2,000-seat venue will be pledged to Weston Park Cancer Charity – following the love, care and support the inspirational Bev received from both charity and hospital staff during her cancer treatment.
One of Bev’s biggest passions during her treatment was reaching out to others so they did not feel alone, and her family want to continue doing this. Weston Park Cancer Charity is working with the Croke family to support the one in two people diagnosed with cancer – to donate to the BB With Love fund online, visit https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/BB-with-Love.
“Mum always wanted to help people,” said daughter Rachel, who will star in Simply The Best alongside her brother Matt – both of whom boast impressive performing arts portfolios.
“Throughout her cancer journey, she didn’t want others to feel that they were alone and that they could reach out.
“One of the big things which she always wanted was to volunteer. By setting up BB With Love, it’s like saying ‘from Bev with love’… through us, she is still able to help others.
“We wanted to help Weston Park and to continue what mum wanted to do in helping people.”
Rachel and Matt trained and performed together in Sheffield from a young age before embarking on successful careers.
After succeeding in a variety of professional contracts, Rachel is now a Licentiate member of the International Dance Teachers Association. Meanwhile Matt has starred in lead roles in London’s West End in the likes of Wicked, Singin’ in the Rain, Chicago and most recently the lead role in Aladdin.
Rachel and Matt will be joined by Broadway and West End star, Kerry Ellis, X-Factor winner Joe McElderry, and Ben Forster, winner of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘Superstar’ competition in 2012.
Also joining the line-up will be Faye Tozer of pop group Steps; Hayley Tamaddon, performer and star of Emmerdale, Coronation Street and Shameless; and British performer, actor and comedian Billy Pearce – with many more acts to be confirmed.
Mick Croke, Bev’s husband and father to Rachel, 37, Sean, 35, and Matt, 33, said: “Treatment is getting better every day.
“For every penny we can raise, if it pays towards helping awareness of the mental health support available, and if someone up at Weston Park’s research centre finds a treatment which improves outcomes for patients right here in Sheffield – it’d be absolutely wonderful.
“I’m here with my family, raising money and awareness to help treat cancers. If we can do that, that’s all we wanted to achieve. If people affected by cancer talk to each other more and more, we’ve done everything that Beverley wanted to achieve.
“The effect of our fundraising is going to be distributed in an area that is so close to our hearts, and that of people across our region. It’s all for genuine purposes and after this last year and a half, when charities have taken such a battering, we want to play our part.
“If one person, this time next year, says thank you to me because of what we’ve managed to do – that’s payment enough.”
For more information on Simply The Best or for tickets, visit https://www.sheffieldcityhall.co.uk/event/bbwithlove/October2021.