SINGER Beverley Craven will be performing in Chesham next month following the release of her first studio album for ten years, 'Close To Home'.

The gig will be close to home for the Brit-award winner best known for hits such as 'Promise Me' and 'Holding On' as she has lived in Beaconsfield for the last six years with her songwriter husband Colin Campsie and daughters Molly, 17, Brenna, 14 and Conni, 13.

Beverley was born in Sri Lanka but her family soon relocated back to the UK. When she left their Hertfordshire home at 18, she moved to London looking to break into the music industry.

The next few years saw her take on a variety of work including backing vocalist for soul singer Bobby Womack.

After finally being discovered, her successful début album 'Beverley Craven' was released in 1990 and the Brit award, for Best British Newcomer, came two years after.

She went on to record two further albums in 1994 and 1999 but said her “heart wasn't in them as the pull of motherhood was too strong”.

Although her record contract with Sony was for eight albums, she was dropped after the third “which was strange because it felt like I was being dumped by some boys that I didn't even fancy”.

However, the drop suited Beverley: “I gave up at that point because I thought I can't have a career as well as being a good mum – I wasn't doing either very well up until then.”

In the early 2000s, Beverley briefly returned to the music scene with live shows but then received another blow.

She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005. Again, Beverley managed to turn a negative into a positive and “came out the other side.” She received treatment before being given the all clear.

She said: “It made me realise that you've just got to get on and do stuff.” It put the urgency back into her life and encouraged her to return to her music,”It's nice to have a second shot.”

She now has her own record label with her husband who also manages her. This suits Beverley: “Who's going to sign a 45 year old singer-song writer? It's tough out there and the music industry just isn't the same.

“But we are in total control and it's more exciting – it's homespun and I love it.”

On the 5th November, The Elgiva Theatre in Chesham hosts Beverley's intimate gig. She says she enjoys the smaller shows as they enable her to “talk to the audience and it suits my music because it's more personal.”

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