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Theatre group and Bradford community show support for Plastic Surgery and Burns Research Unit


Members of the FYSA theatre company have raised money for the University's Plastic Surgery and Burns Research Unit (PSBRU)

The theatre company has raised £3,257 for the unit from proceeds from 'The 56' based on real-life testimonies from witnesses and survivors of The Bradford City Fire.

‘The 56’ is a play that represents the amalgamation of spoken witness accounts, primary resources and written testimonies from the Bradford City FC Fire. The script came about after members of the company attended a memorial service at Centenary Square, Bradford, which marked 29 years since the Valley Parade fire.

Matt Stevens-Woodhead from the FYSA Theatre Company, said: “It has been a real honour and a privilege to play a part in raising money for PSBRU for BCFC 30th anniversary appeal. The support from all the staff with our fundraising campaign has been absolutely phenomenal and we wish them all every success in continuing the vital work that they do”

Mr Ajay Mahajan, Consultant Plastic Surgeon and Director of the Plastic Surgery and Burns Research Unit, said: “We at the research unit are very grateful to the members of the FYSA theatre company for their generosity. It is gestures such as these that keep the memories of the 56 alive amongst us and help us towards our efforts to improve health care through our research activities.

“I’d also like to thanks the Bradford Police Museum and National Association of Retired Police Officers for their kind donation to the appeal.”

The 56' was developed with The Lowry and The Civic in Barnsley. Taken from over sixty real-life testimonies, the show examines the untold stories of survivors and witnesses of the Bradford City Fire. Over the past year we have interviewed over sixty firefighters, police officers, supporters and players to get their stories.

The show has completed a national tour in 2015, two runs with Underbelly and Assembly at the Edinburgh Fringe (2014 & 2015) and a sell-out run with Battersea Arts Centre (BAC) this autumn. They also performed 'The 56' at the Alhambra Studio around the time of the 30th anniversary as well as taking the show to Bradford City Football Club to be performed in the rebuilt main stand.

Also presenting a cheque to the Unit are representatives from the Bradford Police Museum and NARPO (National Association of Retired Police Officers) who raised £250 for the appeal, through their exhibition in the Museum which showed how Bradford came together in the aftermath of the fire.

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