Enjoy centre’s first music festival today

The Branches Day Centre, for older people with learning difficulties, will host its first music festival this afternoon.
The Branches Day Centre, for older people with learning difficulties, will host its first music festival this afternoon.

A day centre for older people with learning disabilities will host its very own music festival.

Seven acts will perform at Branches Day Centre, in Bradford Road, Batley, today (Saturday) from 3pm-8pm.

Manager Elaine Richardson, 59, said it is the first time the facility, which caters for people over the age of 40 with learning disabilities, has hosted an event like this.

Elaine, of Quarryfields in Mirfield, said: “We’ve never done it before. This is the first time we’ve tried something like this.

“It’s open to the public and to family and friends. It will be a nice day for everybody to meet up.

“Even with the day centre, people don’t see each other every day. Everybody will be mixing together.”

Acts appearing at the event include one-time Pop Idol showstopper Danny Tetley, Ian Howarth of Black Lace fame, the Cubicles and the Outsiders, which consists of 10 people with learning disabilities.

Local artists Chris Martin, Darren Ellis and the Last Minute will also take to the stage.

Elaine hopes the event, also organised by Branches events manager Samantha Jones, will raise funds for Mencap in Kirklees, which the centre is part of.

“She’s been absolutely amazing,” Elaine said.

The outdoor gig will take place at the Carlinghow Mills complex.

Equipment for the gig is being loaned to the centre by Barry Newby at Dezign Audio Limited. He will also stay for the duration to take care of the sound duties.

STL Rapid Response Carriers are also handing over one of their trucks to use as a stage during the event and Spivvey have donated cages to be used for waste disposal.

Elaine thanked all the companies as well as Candy Waller of JR Burrows, who let the building’s units, for offering space to put the gig on.

A free arts, crafts and games session will also be offered to youngsters.Elaine said: “We’re looking forward to a really fun day!”

Entrance to the festival is £5 for adults and £3 for children.