TV presenter and author Fern Britton will be a special guest for a charity festive evening of singing and goodwill at Truro Cathedral.

The event on Tuesday, December 19, will be in aid of Cornwall-based international disaster relief charity, ShelterBox.

The charity supports people who have lost their homes due to conflict or disaster by providing shelter and simple items, like solar lights or water filters, that make a tangible difference.  

Fern, who will be doing a reading at the concert, said: “I am thrilled to be involved in this special festive event with ShelterBox. It’s a lovely way to bring people together and to raise money and awareness for an incredibly important cause.” 

The Clams, a local all-female sea shanty group, will be singing on the night as well as two community choirs, The Ingleheart Singers and The Suitcase Singers, who have both previously performed at events supporting ShelterBox.  

ShelterBox relies on public donations to fund its responses around the world. 

It is currently supporting thousands of people across around 20 rural mountain villages in Morocco who have been unable to return home since an earthquake in September. 

It’s also working with partners in Libya to provide winter clothing, thermal blankets, and heaters ahead of winter to people who have had their homes washed away by devastating flooding. 

Fern added: “The winter months can be a busy time, and it’s easy to get caught up in parties and presents and forget that many families around the world are in need of shelter or basic items like water filters and solar lights. Millions of people are suffering the loss of their homes, livelihoods and sometimes loved ones too. The reality is that for displaced people, the winter can bring with it even harsher conditions and life-threatening low temperatures.”  

ShelterBox has recently launched its winter fundraising appeal to help fund its responses around the world. During the winter months in places like Syria, Morocco and Ukraine, temperatures drop to below freezing, meaning people without shelter are faced with even more hardship. The charity tailors its aid packages during this time of year, to ensure people have the necessary items to stay warm.  

Community fundraising officer Louisa Arnold said: “We recognise that people across the world who are without permanent and adequate shelter are in even more critical need during the colder months, which makes our winter fundraisers incredibly important.   

“The funds we hope to raise during the concert will help us continue our responses around the world and could help us provide more people with winter items such as thermal clothing, stoves and blankets. These items may seem simple, but they could be the difference between life and death in places where temperatures drop below zero.”  

Guests attending the cathedral event will also hear from ShelterBox’s CEO Sanj Srikanthan. It will take place between 7pm and 9pm on December 19, with tickets being on a donation basis. Doors will open at 6:15pm and people are encouraged to arrive in plenty of time. People wishing to attend the concert can book via eventbrite. 

Fern Britton continued: “I am so looking forward to ShelterBox’s first carol concert. I hope to see lots of people at Truro Cathedral showing their support for this wonderful West Country charity that’s life-changing impact would not be possible without its supporters, volunteers, and fundraisers.”