A CHARITY which was set up to raise cash for cancer through the power of music has reached yet another milestone.
Music v Cancer hosted its latest double weekender last week, with a sell-out audience packing into Hartlepool’s Grand Hotel on both Friday and Saturday night.
The charity, now in its sixth year, raked in more than £10,600 over the two nights, taking the total raised so far to a staggering £200,103.
The charity’s founder Tony Larkin was successful in his own battle with bowel cancer, and all of the money raised through MvC is used for vital awareness campaigns and to buy state of the art cancer detection and screening equipment in hospitals in Teesside, meaning cancer can be picked up in patients in the very early stages when it is more likely to be treated successfully.
Tony said: “We didn’t have a target when we set off back in 2010, we had initially planned to do just the one gig as a thank you to the people who treated me.
“But then it snowballed, we did a second event and our target then was to raise £65,000 in five years to fund the first piece of kit for the hospital. We had £80,000 inside 18 months, then it got to £100,000 and now we’re at £200,000 it’s a bit ridiculous to be honest.
“But I want to keep it going as long as I can. We’re not saying we’ll do it for another five years or stop when we reach a certain point, we will keep it going as long we can”
“It’s like a small community now, the artists seem to genuinely love the event, our sponsors are so supportive and there are lots of familiar faces in the audience with people keep coming back time after time.”
The opening night of the latest double-header was dedicated to Tony’s friend and long-serving MvC fundraiser Andy Brown, who lost his own cancer fight in July.
Kimberley Anne was first on stage, followed by The Lake Poets and then headliners The Dunwells. The following night, Ryan Spendlove got proceedings underway before Kal Lavelle, Son of Dave and The Blow Monkeys helped to raise a total of £5,040 to add to the £5,615 made the night before.
Dr Robert, from The Blow Monkeys, said: “It’s an absolute pleasure and an honour to work with Tony Larkin and all at MvC.
“Almost everybody I know has had their lives touched by cancer at some point. I lost my father to cancer when I was young. It’s important for us to get involved and help raise awareness and funds for early detection, support sufferers and keep up the fight.”
Tony added: “Both nights were simply amazing for so many reasons. Friday night was a heartfelt celebration for Andy, he was not only one of my best mates but he was also someone who got involved and raised money for MvC in any way he could, including Coast2Coast bike rides.
“I can’t thank the artists enough who travelled from far and wide to support MvC and continue to do so time after time. I’m also grateful to our fantastic sponsors, the home of MvC the Grand Hotel, Basset Audio, ARD Photography and the forever faithful MvC crowd who are so supportive and generous always making the Weekenders a continual sell out event.”
Sponsors across the Weekender included Total Recycling, UV Guard (Australia), Phoenix Steel, Gowler Project Services, Ward Bros, Coast Kitchens, Merlin PCB, MKM Building Services, Hart Biologicals, Reactive Design, Attco Ltd and ITC Services.