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Pacemaker boost for church

21 June 2013

PA

THE band Gerry and the Pacemakers were a bill-topping attraction in the 1960s. But tomorrow the group's singer, Gerry Marsden (above, top), will be headlining at a church-hall gig in West Yorkshire, to raise funds for the restoration of the bell tower.

Mr Marsden, aged 70, is part of a weekend festival at St Michael's, Emley, near Huddersfield, organised by a villager, Guy Loveridge, a friend of the singer.

Mr Loveridge said: "When I heard the church needed help, I thought: what better way to raise money than to get him to play in Emley? I started chatting to him and his manager, and he agreed to do his own acoustic set. Gerry has been a mate for about a decade now. We met at the Macau Grand Prix . . . and have kept in touch ever since."

Mr Marsden will make his appearance during a break in a world tour that celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Pacemakers' three successive number-one hits in 1963. "It's great to be doing something different in my 50th-anniversary year," he said. "When Guy asked about doing this, I was delighted to confirm. I hope everyone comes down."

The Priest-in-Charge, the Revd Dr John Marsh, said: "We're a Grade I listed building, and we're hoping it will be great for fund-raising."

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