A bride who made it to the battle rounds of hit BBC show the Voice brought tears to her mother’s eyes after discovering her dream “Grace Kelly” wedding dress in Bluebell Wood’s Rotherham charity shop.

It came after a devastating few months where Ruth Lockwood-Sorsby and her husband-to-be Mark brought their wedding day forward so her seriously ill dad could be by their side.Photo credit: Jade Gooch, Hushabye Films

The pair married at his Rotherham Hospice bedside last summer, a week before he passed away of stomach cancer. In his final days, Ruth’s dad Geoff Lockwood made her promise the fairytale wedding that was planned for the following January would go ahead regardless. 

It was during preparations for her ‘second wedding’ that Ruth chanced upon her dream wedding dress on one of her regular trips to browse the extensive range of pre-loved bridal, evening and prom wear at Bluebell Wood’s Rotherham charity shop.

“My mum and I often pop in to the Bluebell Wood shop in Rotherham as they always have such lovely dresses,” said Ruth, 26, who lives in Kiveton Park.

“We went upstairs to browse and I saw the most beautiful lace popping out from the rack so I took a closer look and there was my dress, in my size.

“Straight away I knew it was the dress I always wanted - a Grace Kelly dress. It was perfect. My mum didn't cry when she saw me in the dress for the first wedding but she cried when she saw me in this."

Photo credit: AHRTMEDIA“She was convinced my dad would have loved it. I had the moment all over again and I could feel my dad there.

“I'm so glad I found my dream dress and that it went to such a wonderful cause that’s close to our hearts.”

Ruth’s second big day, consisting of a wedding blessing and celebration, came in January this year at Holy Trinity Church in Wentworth.

Thanks to an incredible team effort from family, friends and loved ones, they managed to pull it all together on a shoestring budget.

“I planned my wedding in the process of grieving and it was the hardest time for me, but it also helped me heal and brought a lot of happiness along the way. 

“Our January wedding was everything I could have dreamed of and more. It was thanks to a real group effort that it even happened because after my dad died we were really struggling for money.

“My friends and a lot of our family helped up so much organising fundraisers in honour of my dad for the hospice and for our wedding. Friends and even strangers helped us so much and we were so grateful.”

Ruth, who works at Rotherham College as well as teaching singing at City Music School, Thurcroft and Your Music Academy in Mexbrough, is also a professional singer and actor. Photo credit: Jade Gooch, Hushabye Films

She made it through to the battle rounds of BBC’s The Voice in 2017 after being scouted for the show while at university.

The classically trained soprano wowed judges with her unique take on contemporary pop hits, with a videos of her unique rendition of Britney Spear’s ‘Toxic’ racking up almost two million view on YouTube.

June Salthouse, manager of Bluebell Wood’s Rotherham shop, said: “We’re absolutely delighted that Ruth found her dream dress and it helped bring her family a little bit of happiness after all they’d been though.

“Every item of clothing we sell helps us support local children and families when they need it the most, so shopping here really does make a huge difference.”

Bluebell Wood’s Rotherham charity shop can be found on 12 Wellgate, Rotherham, S60 2LR and is open Monday – Saturday between 9am – 4pm.