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across the Weald and South East

Sometimes all it takes is the motivation and vision of one person with the reliable support of a few others to get a great thing going. In this case that person is Tom Mackelden, 20, from Staplehurst. His motivation and passion is to raise money for Cancer Research UK following the loss of his mum, Tania, to the disease in February 2017.

He is a remarkable young man, who has already received CRUK’s young fundraiser of the year award. In the last 18 months with the support of locals he has put together a number of events including a charity football match, a James Bond theme ball and some marathons raising more than £15.000 for the charity. Now he and two co-organisers are determined to launch Staplehurst’s first open air music festival and all the proceeds will be going to CRUK.

TN Live Festival will showcase bands from the Weald performing their own material and covers. Many will already recognise the names of some of the up and coming artists and talented bands, such as The Gallerys, Tarot Rats and Black Sheep, but one of the primary aims of the event is to give unknown newcomers a platform to perform to a larger audience.

‘I like to think that because this is the first festival people will come to see what it is like and to support our fundraising effort and that each year it will go from strength to strength attracting bigger and bigger bands. Hopefully one day we will be able to attract some really big bands’ he explains.

Tom has also set up a support group for families affected by the disease, as well as a You Tube Channel – Life after Cancer Support, hoping to reach younger people with his advice if they aren’t keen on attending meetings.

‘I have always liked being active and challenging myself’ he said ‘I started fundraising a few months before I lost my mum. I felt like it helped me and gave me the feeling of helping others. It felt good to be giving back’.

TN Live Festival will take place at Jubilee Sports Field, Headcorn Road, Staplehurst on Saturday 1st Setepmber 2018.

To buy tickets and for full details including location and directions please click the link – https://www.bigwow.uk/event/tn-live-festival/


Words by Emma Wood – Big WOW founder

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