Press Release

Morden Mum’s Parting Gift
Much-loved mother of two, Ruth Merriman, had a dream before she died – a wish for her friends and family to record her favourite song to help raise funds for her beloved charity Jigsaw4U – and already her hopes have turned into a magical reality.

Ruth’s simple idea saw local schools, choirs, musicians and dance groups taking part in a project that quickly smashed Ruth and husband John’s hoped-for target of £3,000 within just two days of Ruth’s tragic death on 9th March.

Once Ruth had announced her wish to recreate ‘Hold On Change Is Coming’ (originally recorded by Sounds Of Blackness in 1997), music studio owner and producer John quickly jumped into action. He first set up a Just Giving page, promising donors an exclusive preview of the track ahead of its release, and then he got to work, with much of the new recording taking place at the multi-award-winning family business, Crown Lane Studio in Morden, southwest London.

The new version of this beautifully uplifting song along with a moving video will be released on Monday 25th March to coincide with Ruth’s funeral on what would have been her 39th birthday.

The project has involved staff and 400 pupils from Ruth and John’s sons’ school, Hillcross Primary, with the support of local choir Inner Harmony of which Ruth was a founding member. It also features percussion performances from Ruth’s sons Asher (7) and Nathan (who turned 11 the day after Ruth died) as well as winners of the school’s recent talent contest and solo cameos from students whom Ruth had mentored.

Meanwhile, without John realising, Sutton Dance Academy, of which younger son Asher is a member, had heard about the project and they secretly choreographed, rehearsed and filmed a stunning and very emotional dance to complement the song. “Only five days after their mummy had died,” says John, “Asher was dancing again and both he and Nathan were drumming their hearts out, but this time in honour of their wonderful mum and to help raise funds for a charity close to our hearts.”

Ruth was training to be an advocate for the charity Jigsaw4U in July 2018 when she was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. This charity, which offers help to children and young adults going through a variety of difficulties, has been instrumental in supporting Ruth and John’s own sons as they as they have dealt with Ruth’s diagnosis and illness, and so it seemed fitting for the family to donate all funds to Jigsaw4U.

“Out of something so tragic,” says Ruth’s husband John, “has come something so very beautiful that will impact thousands of people. I just wish Ruth were here to enjoy this – she would be as amazed as I am at everyone’s creativity and generosity.”

To donate:
Charity information:

Here’s a 30 second teaser of “Hold On”:


Bereavement counselling and much more, for young people in Sutton & Merton


Contact: Jenny Harwood
020 8687 1384

Link to JustGiving:
The only place to find out about the song – we have no website!

For a sample of the song:

We are keen for the story to reach as wide an audience as possible in the shortest time, to gain the maximum impact for the charity which Ruth was training to work for when she was diagnosed with Lymphoma. Unbelievably, the same charity is now supporting our boys with bereavement counselling.