BENefit returns for fourth year

Local charities and businesses providing support for fundraiser.

Aldridge youth charity event BENefit Gig returns for its fourth year later this month, inspired by a local music fan, and supported by local organisations and businesses including Rosie’s Helping Hands.

14 year old Aldridge student Ben Sambrook passed away in February 2014 following years of fighting a brain tumour with gruelling surgery and treatment. Just ten days before his death, his friends held the first BENefit Gig to raise awareness of the disease and money for brain tumour charities.

Ben’s wish was for the gig to continue – to raise money and to give young people of Aldridge the opportunity to showcase talent and to have a local, safe night out. The event has now become an annual event and attracts audience members and bands from schools and colleges all around the region.

This year, Aldridge School’s Interact Club, a group of sixth formers committed to local fundraising, have been promoting the event, which is likely to sell out for the second year running. It will be held at the Killock in Aldridge on Friday 24th March, with tickets priced at £7, with all profits to Brain Tumour Support. The gig is being held in the week of what would have been Ben’s 18th birthday.

Sunday 44, a Walsall six piece band will return to headline the line-up. Birmingham band The Real Cool are looking forward to making their first appearance at BENefit Gig, with more sets from Aldridge bands Underground Storm and Archers. Ben’s younger sister Emily Sambrook will headline the Aldridge Media Acoustic Stage, duo Georgia Burgess and Kirsty Monaghan will perform on this stage as well as Aldridge sixth former and friend of Ben, Jodie Homfray and Birmingham Ormiston Academy singers Rhianna Keane and Aoife Kenny. 18 year old student Phoebe Ash will host the evening with the Interact team providing a disco to round off the evening.

To enable all the money from ticket sales to go to the charity, sponsorship is covering the costs of the event. Local charity Rosie’s Helping Hands has provided significant support towards the cost of a professional sound and light company. Local businesses who are supporting the event are Walsall Music Den, Cohesion Ltd, Mobile Dent Removal, Nameplate UK, Sambrook Wakelin, Sweet Causes and Aldridge Media, with support from Third Walsall Sea Scouts, Aldridge School and LNP Sound.

Ticket information can be found on the gig’s Facebook page BENefitGig, or call the box office on 01922 456742.