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Northern Ireland man Wayne Rodgers serenades care home residents amid lockdown

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Wayne Rodgers

Wayne Rodgers

Wayne Rodgers

A singer has been brightening up the day for hundreds of people in care homes with impromptu concerts.

For the last two weeks Bellaghy man Wayne Rodgers has been belting out tunes from the 50s and 60s for elderly people cut off from their loved ones and wider society.

On Monday he visited four nursing homes in Ballynahinch and on request serenaded an 82-year-old grandmother outside her home.

With the sun shining on Thursday, life felt almost normal again for the residents of Magherafelt Manor care home when they were allowed out into the garden for the first time in weeks to hear Wayne sing for them.

The 49-year-old, a wedding singer who also runs a driving school, found himself out of work overnight when the lockdown started.

I've done about 12 performances so far and it's lovely to see the faces of the residents and how happy they are to sing along Wayne Rodgers

"To be honest, I probably get more out of it than the residents do," said Wayne, who's married to retail manager Marisa and has two grown-up kids, Jack (24) and Hollie (19).

"It is nice to be able to do something for people.

"All the nursing home has to do is put an extension lead out the window and I can sing wherever suits.

"I just sing for half an hour and it's been fantastic.

"I've done about 12 performances so far and it's lovely to see the faces of the residents and how happy they are to sing along."

Wayne has also been struck by the gratitude of nursing home staff, who have been delighted to see smiles back on the faces of residents.

"It is amazing to see those carers. They are doing so much for the residents. It is lovely to be able to sing for them too," he said.

Belfast Telegraph