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Summertime Hit For Guildford Charity Challengers

Published on: 20 Jul, 2021
Updated on: 21 Jul, 2021

By David Reading

As the sunshine beat down on Wood Street Village green, the Guildford charity Challengers found itself with a summer fundraising success on Sunday afternoon (July 18).

Enjoying the jazz in the summer sunshine. Picture by Emily Blackley.

Well over 400 people flocked to the charity’s annual jazz festival held as temperatures soared – giving Challengers a much-needed £13,000 boost to its funds.

The charity partnered with Guildford Jazz to hold the event, making it its biggest festival yet.

Expressing delight with the amount of money raised, the charity said this would have a long-lasting impact in providing play opportunities for local disabled children.

Challengers is bouncing back from the pandemic having suffered a difficult 16 months. When lockdown began in March 2020, the organisation was forced to close its services completely and cancel upcoming fundraising events. There was a danger the charity would not survive.

Local jazz star Marianne Windham introduces the acts. Picture by Emily Blackley.

Emily Blackley, the charity’s senior community events officer, said: “The festival raised around double the amount of money for Challengers than it did last year.

“We are so grateful to all of the guests and our supporters who helped make this day happen, and it was an amazing day. We were very lucky with the weather as well, with beautiful sunshine all day.”

Yameem Deedar (front) with his staff from the Shahin Tandoori Restaurant. Picture by Alex Russell.

The Shahin Tandoori Rstaurant on Woodbridge Hill offered tasty curries. Restaurant proprietor Yameem Deedar said all proceeds from the food sold will be donated to Challengers.

Star performer Louise Marshall on stage. Picture by Kevin Freeman.

Two acclaimed jazz acts topped the bill – the  Dennis Rollins Velocity Trio and Louise Clare Marshall.

Support acts were the Guildford-based Somethin’ Else Big Band and the Stuart Henderson “Back to Blue Note” Quintet.

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