A charity music video

‘Two Paces Back’

Background

In the summer of 2020 I saw the opportunity to release a song to mark The Duke of Edinburgh’s 100th birthday on 10 June 2021. The Royal Household informed me that they would not be able to endorse a private individual’s project but that I was welcome to pursue it independently in favour of a suitable charity of my choice. To my mind none was more suitable than The Silver Line, the free, confidential helpline available all day, every day, offering advice, information and friendship to anyone aged 55 and over in the United Kingdom. In the pandemic so many older people struggled with loneliness, isolation and feelings of vulnerability. It is precisely such people whom this superb organisation exists to support.

My collaborators and I were working on the birthday video when The Duke of Edinburgh sadly died on 9th April. Having come so far with our work, we decided that it would be a great shame if the opportunity to look back over all His Royal Highness’s years and to benefit The Silver Line slipped away. We therefore agreed that I would revise the lyrics and release the song as a tribute after an appropriate gap following the funeral. With the exception of the slower ending, the tune was unchanged. It was always intended to be jaunty and upbeat. The composer, Chris Fish, and I felt that this was still in keeping with a song now adapted to be a celebration of The Duke of Edinburgh’s life, and that a gentleman full of humour who so disliked fuss would prefer to be remembered cheerfully rather than mournfully.

The song raised a little over £4,000 for The Silver Line on the JustGiving fundraising page following its release on 1 May 2021. It will be retained here on my website as a permanent reflection on the extraordinary devotion and sense of duty which The Duke of Edinburgh showed throughout his long and full life.

‘Two Paces Back’ Music Video

Why the Silver Line?

This wonderful charity offers not just a helpline. It offers a lifeline. Recent times have shown us all just how much we have missed contact with other people. Many older people feel that absence every day. Many feel that they have no one to listen to them, no one to whom they can talk openly.

The Silver Line fills that gap for people aged 55 and over and can expand its crucial work with greater funds.

To find out more visit www.thesilverline.org.uk, where donations can be made. To benefit from the service, dial 0800 4 70 80 90, anytime.

Henry Dawe

Actor & Writer