The head of a performing arts group has movingly described how her mother was the inspiration behind its latest production.
Helen Weekley, principal of Backstage Academy of Performing Arts, went ahead with the show Pharoah’s Whisper just days after her mum, Christine Field, passed away.
Mrs Field (64) died at her home in Lutton Garnsgate last Monday after a long fight with breast cancer highlighted in the Spalding Guardian last October, when she won the right to have life-prolonging treatment funded by the NHS.
A celebration of Mrs Field’s life will take place at Boston Crematorium on April 15 at 3.15pm when Backstage students and their families are expected to join family and friends, including her husband Phil, daughter Helen and two grandchildren.
Helen said: “My mum passed away peacefully at home last Monday morning after a horrific battle with cancer.
“Holding my dad Phil’s hand, Mum took her last breath and I feel she waited for me and the children to be on the school run before passing away so it was just her and Dad.
“I’d spent days by her side saying how much we loved her and that we were so very proud of her, even though the battle with cancer was fierce as the disease took hold of her body.
“She was able to talk of magical things before passing away, including how I must be strong, and it was one of her dying wishes that Pharoah’s Whisper was performed.
“My mum adored Backstage Academy as it was a huge part of her life and she had never missed any of my shows.
“I know she was trying so hard to hold on for it but seeing the pain in her eyes, I promised her that no matter what happens the show would go on.”
Helen thanked family and friends for their support but criticised staff at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King’s Lynn, for not doing more to help her mum.
She said: “My husband, friends and staff at the academy have kept me going for months and I owe them so much thanks.
“But my mum had a horrific experience of cancer and the NHS, including Queen Elizabeth Hospital, who let her down greatly with 999 calls being ignored, scans not being done on the brain which left the cancer there undetected and being left in accident and emergency for over six hours in extreme pain.
“The NHS failed my mum even though she tried so hard to stand up for her rights on how cancer patients should be treated.
“She doesn’t want anyone else to have this hell-on-earth experience that should never have happened had the Queen Elizabeth Hospital been on top of things.”
Helen described Mrs Field, a former self-employed hair stylist for about 20 years, as a “proud lady” with a “strong, bubbly and feisty character” and who loved helping other people.
She added: ”Mum loved life and was full of energy and dedication to my dad, me, my husband and her grandchildren who were her world.
“She loved my dad so much and this has shattered our world, but it’s brought us closer together as a family.
“We have each other and that’s all we need.”