Welwyn Rugby Club music festival tribute sold out

People enjoying themselves, with Dirty Half Hunded (band) in the background. Welwyn Rugby Club. Picture: Simon Jenkins

People enjoying themselves, with Dirty Half Hunded (band) in the background. Welwyn Rugby Club. Picture: Simon Jenkins


Welwyn Rugby Club hosted a music festival to raise awareness of mental health and to give the community a good time, following the loss of two young players.

The music festival that was held at the rugby club on Saturday, June 17, was completely sold out.

Around 500 tickets were sold with people still turning up on the day wanting to get in.

The amount that was raised for JOCA, to fund its work in helping local people with mental health and well-being issues, will be revealed once organisers know the total.

JOCA - Just One Click Away - was set up by Welwyn Rugby Club, based in Welwyn Garden City, following the loss of two young players.

The charity raises the profile of mental health issues, particularly among young men, and provides support and counselling to those in need of someone to talk to.

The festival paid tribute to Arron Bugden and Ryan Heyward who left fellow members of Welwyn Rugby Club devastated following their deaths.

Much-loved husband and father Arron, of Melbourne near Royston, also known as Tiff, died suddenly on September 8 last year at the age of 37.

Popular Ryan, 23, who grew up in Potters Bar and lived in Brookmans Park, died after going missing from his home on December 2.

Sue Topham, who helped organise the event, said: “It went really well, the turnout was overwhelming and lovely.

“June 21 would have been Ryan’s birthday and he loved music festivals so we thought this was a fitting tribute.

“We didn’t want it to be a sad day, we wanted everyone to have a good time and people did.

“We would like to thank everybody who came and supported and also to everyone that helped make the day happen.”

Plans are in the pipeline for a festival next year.

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