A fundraising concert in Glasgow generated more than £40,000 for the SFRS family Support Trust and Anthony Nolan.
Two charities closely linked to the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) will benefit from more than £40,000 raised through a concert by famous Celtic Rock band the Red Hot Chilli Pipers.
All proceeds from the band’s sell-out gig at the O2 ABC in Glasgow will be donated to the SFRS Family Support Trust and Anthony Nolan – a charity helping find donors for people with life-threatening blood cancers.
The cash is a windfall for the two charities and will help ensure they can continue their work to help people facing incredibly difficult times in their lives.
Deputy Chief Officer Alex Clark said: “The two charities benefiting from this concert are special to people throughout the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and I want to extend my thanks to everyone involved in delivering a tremendous fundraising night.
“Our own Family Support Trust is the oldest fire service charity in the UK and the support it gives to current and former employees and their families is crucial to helping them through times of injury and bereavement.
“Anthony Nolan is our official charity partner and our staff have recruited thousands of potential stem cell donors, leading to a chance of life for at least nine people with conditions like Leukaemia.
“For the Red Hot Chilli Pipers to stage a fundraising concert entirely for these charities is an incredibly generous act and the massive sum generated will make a real difference.”
A crowd of more than 1,300 people attended the concert, which was the brainchild of serving firefighter – and Red Hot Chilli Pipers founder – Willie Armstrong.
The band is an ensemble act combining pipes, guitars, drums and keyboards and has amassed a global fan-base.
Since its formation in 2004 it has released five studio albums and featured on the soundtrack to the Dreamworks animated movie How to Train Your Dragon 2.
Willie said: “This is the first time in the history of the band that we’ve played for nothing and that’s because this is all about helping two great causes.
“The gig sold out months ago and every penny will go to the charities, including the merchandising, the ticket money and the proceeds from a raffle.
“I’m an operational firefighter and obviously the Family Support Trust is close to my heart because if something happens to a firefighter then they will step in and help the individual or their family.
“We also wanted to help Anthony Nolan – not only to raise money for them but also to raise awareness so people can become donors and help save the lives of blood cancer patients.”
Firefighter Steve McCrorie, who is currently competing on hit BBC show The Voice, made a special guest appearance as the Chilli’s support act.
The Clackmannanshire crooner – who serves with a crew at Kirkcaldy Fire Station – said: “It’s great to be part of an evening like this and it’s going to such a great cause.
“I think the Red Hot Chilli Pipers as an act are great and it was a real privilege to come and play.”
More information on the SFRS Family Support Trust is available on its website at http://sfr-familysupport.org.uk/
To find out more about Anthony Nolan visit http://www.anthonynolan.org/
More information on the Red Hot Chilli Pipers can be found on there website www.redhotchillipipers.co.uk