A fantastic evening of entertainment took place at the club on 25th November 2017 in aid of the Rocky Appeal, with the sounds of Neil Diamond reverberating throughout the building. The man himself did not appear, we think he had another booking elsewhere, so it was left to the amazing talents of Portsmouth born Barry Williams to perform Neil Diamond’s entire repertoire to a packed club. From the first note of the first song, we all knew that this was a true and authentic tribute to the man, and that we were in for a great night.
Barry’s show was in two parts, with a delicious buffet supplied by the club during the interval. The first half was entirely dedicated to Neil Diamond, with rousing vocal involvement along the way by the audience, and plenty of arm-waving as any Neil Diamond performance demands. In the second part, Barry showed off his talents further with an endless supply of standard songs from all the greats, including Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Presley, Dean Martin, the list was endless, and soon a real party mood took over. Lots of people dancing, and Barry performing requests long after he thought he had sung his final number! The show was brought to a close by Fran Emery, who had been the MC for the evening, bringing a touch of humour to the proceedings.
Barry gave us a night to remember, and the icing on the cake was that he did it all for free in aid of the Rocky Appeal, based at the Queen Alexandra hospital. There was a collection for the appeal on the night which was boosted to over £500 by a very kind gesture from club regular Steve Benham who won the Pot of Gold draw, but gave all of his winnings back. Then, thanks to the generosity of the club, that figure was almost doubled, with a total of £1000 being donated.
People are already asking when Barry will be back. Well it is fairly certain that he will return sometime in 2018, when we will surely be treated to yet another unforgettable night.