Final farewells were said this week to Sheffield pantomime stalwart Brian Platts, but there was no doubting that his legacy will live on.
Already more than £5,000 has been raised in his memory for St Luke’s Hospice, his favourite charity, and Manor Operatic’s shows will continue to bear his indelible mark.
Brian, who died aged 76, was carried into St Marie’s RC Cathedral in Norfolk Row on Tuesday with a top hat on his coffin - the one he wore when he received the MBE at Buckingham Palace in 2000 for services to Manor Operatic, which he joined 48 years ago.
Family members spoke at the requiem mass and there was a solo by soprano Sarah Buckley. Private cremation followed.
Brian, ever the pantomime dame as well as the producer, left the stage eight years ago after a series of strokes.
Irwin Taylor, who has known him for 44 years and worked with him for 30, said there were many “old faces” at the funeral, but also some from the society who did not know him.
Yet he added: “Everybody knew his reputation. He was unique, and nobody could ever be an understudy to Brian. It could never be the same, but the standards he set are the ones we work on now, and that’s a compliment to him.”
Manor Operatic has given £5,000 to St Luke’s, and there is a tribute page on the hospice’s website.
Other donations are being made by members of the public, who are adding their thoughts.
Chloe Winter writes: “He was my inspiration. I used to go to the panto every year and all I ever wanted was to grow up and be like him. And I still do. He brought joy to the world - let’s keep sharing it.”
Chloe Winter says: “He was my inspiration”
St Luke’s says Brian was “well known to many people in Sheffield and beyond .... a larger than life character with a big heart”.