BBC Folk Award winner returns to music with Sunderland pub charity gig

Bill Jones at The Avenue in Roker, Sunderland
Bill Jones at The Avenue in Roker, Sunderland
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A BBC Folk Award winner who put her music career to one side to raise her three children is returning to the stage for a charity gig.

At the height of her career, from 1999 to 2004, Bill (Belinda) Jones picked up a Best Newcomer award at the BBC Folk Awards in 2001, released three albums and toured extensively across the UK, USA and Japan.

But after the birth of her first son Dom, 14, she struggled to juggle the demands of touring with looking after a newborn and put her music on hold for her family.

Now, Bill, 44, who is also mum to Sean, 12, and Caden, 5, is back doing what she loves and will be performing a charity gig at The Avenue, in Roker, on July 8, as well as recording a new album.

Bill, who also works in a clerical role at South Tyneside Hospital, is performing in aid of ARC (Antenatal Results and Choices), a charity which helped Bill and husband Chris through a traumatic chapter in their lives.

In 2011 they were dealt the devastating blow that their unborn baby had a severe genetic abnormality and they made the tough decision to end the pregnancy.

Bill, who lives in Fulwell, says the charity were a lifeline in a heartbreaking situation she never expected to face.

She said: “When you’re pregnant you never think that something could be seriously wrong with your baby and the decision we made was heartbreaking. It’s such a sensitive subject and one that’s not really talked about.

“We used the services of ARC a lot and they helped us a huge amount in a non-directive way. I always said I wanted to fundraise to thank them. It was all a bit raw for a while, but now I feel ready to get back into music and help them through my charity gigs.”

As well as the charity gig in Sunderland, Bill will be performing at Union Chapel in London and has released a single, called Caden’s Lullaby which is available to download for £1, with proceeds going to ARC.

•Bill will perform with alongside local musicians JP Garde and Paul Stewart at The Avenue from 8pm on July 8. Tickets are £10 and are available from To download Caden’s Lullaby, go to