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Sheffield charity stalwart dies suddenly

Keith Rowe and mum Margaret Rowe

Keith Rowe and mum Margaret Rowe

A stalwart of Sheffield’s music scene who raised more than £125,000 in charity concerts has died suddenly.

Keith Roe, aged 60, called Sheffield City Hall the day before he died to say he would conduct a Christmas concert from his wheelchair.

The former teacher had been diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumour in January, which affected his movement on one side, and suffered a bleed to the brain on Thursday.

Thousands of people have watched the concerts he organised over the years with the Fellowship Theatre Company.

Keith said mum Margaret, 89 a former double pass player in the 1940s Ivy Benson All Girls Band, was his inspiration.

She said: “Music was his life.

“For the last concert he staged he would spend day after day writing music. I would say he was doing too much, but he loved it.

“The day before he died he rang the manager of the city hall and said he could do a Christmas concert from his wheelchair and conduct with his right hand.”

Margaret thanked people who had donated the ticket cost for an April concert which had to be cancelled because of Keith’s health battle.

She added: “I have been overwhelmed with cards and letters.”

Keith, of Crimicar Lane, Fulwood, began fundraising in 1983 after his father Robert died of a heart attack and has helped many Sheffield charities. He died at the Northern General Hospital.

Tony Barrington, a friend of Keith’s, from Beauchief, added: “We can’t believe it and are all in shock. Everybody is devastated.”

Keith’s funeral will be on Saturday, May 31, at Victoria Hall Methodist Church, time to be confirmed.

 

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