Gig in the Garden raises vital funds for CLIC Sargent

The ‘Gig in the Garden’ was held on Sunday 23 September amidst the beautiful backdrop of Stowey Court, Nether Stowey, Somerset. Not even the rain could dampen the sprits of the 250 strong crowd who attened the event to raise a fabulous £14,000 for CLIC Sargent.

Gig in the Garden raises vital funds for CLIC Sargent

The day itself saw some fantastically talented local musicians performing, the Bridgwater Rock Chorus opened the event followed with sets from the up and coming Levi & The Bean, charismatic Simon Harris and the legendary Julian Dawson who had just returned from his international tour.

Taking centre stage was the fantastic local talent of Young Generation (winner of Bridgwater’s Battle of the Bands). Their lead singer, Francesca Smith, who organised the event last year, hoped to make this year’s event even bigger and better with the support of Mike and Viv Haynes who took this project on with whole hearted determination.

Francesca’s main motivation for organising this event was to help raise funds for the charity that supported her family. Francesca was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia at the age of 21 months. From the point of diagnoses, CLIC Sargent played an invaluable role, helping Francesca’s family cope with the financial, emotional and practical impact that a cancer diagnosis can bring. Francesca is now very well but still continues to have annual check ups at Musgrove Hospital where she received the majority of her treatment.

Francesca said, ‘I was very young when I was diagnosed but I know that CLIC Sargent’s support was very important to my Mum and Dad. I am still in touch with the nurses, doctors and social workers who treated me and some of them are here at the event.’

The day also included a display of classic and supercars, plus the opportunity to take a once in a lifetime spin in an Aston Martin DB9 by guessing the total horsepower of all the cars on display.

Vivian and Mike would like to thank all their friends and family who worked tirelessly both in the run up to the gig and throughout the day. Friends and local businesses also kindly donated items for the raffle and some amazing auction prizes including a week’s accommodation in a Florida Villa, an apartment on the French Riviera, a Welsh cottage and a personally autographed book by motor racing legend Sir Stirling Moss also signed by Lord March the founder of the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Three Olympic torch bearers complete with torches, kindly gave their time to attend and pose for photographs with guests who made donations to the charity.

Kiren Fernandes, Fundraising Manger for CLIC Sargent said ‘The day has been a fantastic success. This would not have been possible without the generosity of Mike and Viv Haynes and their fantastic army of volunteers. A massive thank you must also go to Francesca, her family and friends for their continued support of CLIC Sargent. The money raised here will go to helping others like Francesca.'

To find out how you can support CLIC Sargent, please contact Kiren Fernandes, Fundraising Manager  on 0117 311 2620 or email

You can still make a donation if you were unable to attend on the 'Gig in the Garden' donation page.