Mansfield: Music for the masses raises Oxfam cash

Oxjam Music Festival, Mansfield. Pictured is Pat Cunningham performing at the main stage in Mansfield Town Centre.

Oxjam Music Festival, Mansfield. Pictured is Pat Cunningham performing at the main stage in Mansfield Town Centre.

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Up-and-coming acts from Mansfield and across Nottinghamshire got crowds rocking when the Oxjam Festival hit town at the weekend.

An outdoor stage in the market place was supported by a raft of other venues including the Intake Club, the Bowl in Hand, the New Inn and After Dark in a bid to raise £5,000 for Oxfam.

Saturday’s gigs were part of a national campaign, with hundreds of volunteer-organised fundraising events happening all over the country throughout October.

Among the acts strutting their stuff were Karley Lou, Cut the Heroics, Adelphia, the Hip Hop Gorillas, Rob Hible, Pat Cunningham, Sam Jones, Cocklebread and Maryanna Band.

There was also an appearance from the Stagecoach Theatre Group, who performed The Wiz, while the Mansfield Misfits Roller Derby entertained the town centre audience in between performances.

Olivia Harding of Mansfield-based organisers Plug Promotions was delighted with the response from the public and said: “We had some really positive feedback from everybody and there was a great atmosphere at all the different venues.

“It can be sometimes difficult to get noticed as a band or singer in this area, but events like this definitely help put people on the map. There are some talented people out there and it can be just a question of them getting a big break.”

More than 50 artists played throughout the day, with audiences paying for a wristband that allowed them access to all venues.

The main stage, however, was free as people instead donated via a bucket collection. Fake grass, picnic hampers, tents and bunting formed part of a colourful set themed on camping.

“The final total raised has still to be finalised, but there was a steady flow of people across the venues and we’re hoping to at least match the target,” added Olivia.

“Events like this can only help give a positive image of Mansfield, and we’re hoping that it’s something that can go from strength to strength in the future.”

Plug Promotions are a group of young people who organise and run their own arts events. They are funded and supported by County Youth Arts (part of Nottinghamshire County Council) who run the Old Library in Mansfield.

County Youth Arts offer arts events and activities for young people 13-19 from The Old Library as well as across the County. For more information contact jen.saint@nottscc.gov.uk or check out www.plugpromotions.com