A GROUP of special local fundraisers have passed a remarkable landmark.

They started as the Millennium Stars and have been using their remarkable talents to back local good causes for over 20 years, and they have now gone past the £300,000 mark.

Alex Lawson, the Lochgelly man who works with the Fife Golf Trust, formed the show team in February 1998 and they still do some shows under the billing of ‘Alex Lawson and Friends.’

At the peak of their performances, in the early 2000s, the Stars used to dress up in costumes depicting the likes of Elvis Presley, Patsy Cline, Abba, The Bay City Rollers and many more famous acts, which caught the imagination of audiences.

Over the past 24 years Alex has lost many friends who played their part in the raising of the hundreds of thousands of pounds.

He reflected this week: “We’ve done shows from Lochgelly to the Cartwheel Bar in Blairgowrie; at Blackpool; and the Lochgelly Centre has been a place that has housed many of our shows.

“It could be one show, to three shows in a weekend, raising anything from £400 to £2,500 on any one night, all done for free.

“I couldn’t have done it without the fantastic people around me and tremendous support from family and friends. The highlight of the year would be performing at Lochgelly Centre theatre to raise funds for the Lochgelly Old Folks Re-union Committee for the Christmas meal where between 60 to 80 senior citizens enjoyed and a wee show and a gift for all.”

Alex, who was Lochgelly’s Citizen of the Year in 2005, added: “June Lawson did the cooking and the centre staff would serve at the yearly event and the old folk would receive at box of chocolates and a chocolate decoration for the tree, all supplied by Anita Macari and family, at the Cafe in Auchterderran Road.

“They were really fantastic with us so a massive thanks to them.

“We also did a war years show, organised by Mrs Isa Bain for the old folks. which was held in the centre sports hall, where we were dressed in army costumes and the centre hall was decorated in all the different flags. June again cooked the meal and all centre staff served and played their part by wearing costumes from the 1940s and a fantastic day was had by around 80 guests.”

The first landmark was when they realised £100,000 and a group photo was taken. Landmark number two was when £200,000 was reached and another photo taken and now they have reached another milestone with £300,000 raised for charity.

Former Provost of Lochgelly, and regional and Fife councillor for the town, Alex Sharp, has followed the group’s efforts and has presented cheques to them depicting the sums raised each time, and he described the group’s efforts as ‘simply amazing’.

Alex said that it’s been really hard since between 2010 and sadly in that time the group has lost a lot of great friends who have passed away.

He said: “We have lost unsung heroes like Joyce and Bill Ovens; Grace and George Nardone; David Whyte; David Russell; and Tam Small, all gone but not never forgotten.

“Over the years the show has been recognised with music awards from Lochgelly Community Council and I myself was named Citizen of the Year in 2005, and also I was fortunate to received an award from the rotary club and Fife Council for the charity work.

“Our last two shows, one in December at the Old Ship Inn, in the town, raised £2,300 for the Maggies Centre, in Kirkcaldy, and the second one, in the West End Bar, raised £1,100 for the Guide Dog Association.

“Special thanks must go to Verdi and her staff at Lochgelly Centre; Mel and Raymond at the Minto Lounge, in Bank Street; all at Lodge 385, in North Street; Lynne and James at the West End Bar, in Main Street, and Bob Paxton and Helen Johnston of the Old Ship, in High Street, for all the free rehearsal time and fantastic support we’ve had over the years.

“And what can I say about our stars of today, Kyle Ross, Lisa Wood, Fraser Sneddon, Loraine Spence, Dani and Nicole Klym; Dawn and Tracy Dickson; Izzy and Stacy Dempster; Val and Robert Brown, Carly and Robert Schiavone; Erin Robertson and Charlie Watson, to name but a few.

“Also to the show MC, the fantastic Mike Wood; and our biggest sponsor, Tom Courts Quality Butcher.

“And help from the singers on the professional club circuit (together) Maggie and Tam, Kenny Smith and Fife’s top Accordionist, Derek Muir, and massive thanks to Mr Sandy Nardone for supplying the limitless karaoke discs over the 20 years.

“And to the people that perform with me today, Robert Russell George Courts, Colm Rudden and Lynne Peffers.

"And lastly a massive thanks to the people of Lochgelly for the fantastic support over the 24 years, it wouldn’t have been possible without them.”