School's arts festival raises thousands for cancer charity - The Rugby Observer

School's arts festival raises thousands for cancer charity

Rugby Editorial 10th Mar, 2020   0

AN ARTS festival held in Rugby last summer has raised £20,000 for Cancer Research UK.

The Festival on the Close, which featured headliners Jason Manford and percussion group Stomp at Rugby School’s famous playing fields last June, raised the money from ticket sales.

Accepting the donation, Cancer Research UK’s Senior Local Fundraising Manager Gemma Kitching said she was delighted with the amount raised.

She added: “This money will be used by the charity to help its aim to beat cancer sooner. £20,000 could fund a Cancer Research UK nurse for six months.

“We are extremely grateful to everyone at Rugby School and to all who supported the festival.”

TV presenter and senior Stomp member Nigel Clarke returned to the school to celebrate the amount raised, joined by a Rugby Free Secondary School student as a representative of the festival’s outreach work with other local schools.

He said: “I love working with kids and giving them a chance to connect with the arts away from their everyday experiences. Most youngsters start off feeling a bit silly making music with a broom, but it’s amazing how quickly they get into it.”

More than 3,000 people attended last year’s festival, which provided 300 free creative workshops and performance opportunities for local school children.

Sammy Farmer, Director of Learning for Drama and teacher of English at Rugby Free Secondary School, said her students appreciated being involved.

She added: “They get the chance to work alongside professional theatre practitioners, which is very inspiring. Festival On The Close offers opportunities that we couldn’t access in any other way, such as performing with Stomp.”

Plans are underway for the 2020 event, which takes place from June 28 to July 2 and will feature a Horrible Histories live show called The Worst of Barmy Britain.

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