Festival secures top headliner

Leestock 2014''Pictured: Organisers ANL-140526-183719009

Leestock 2014''Pictured: Organisers ANL-140526-183719009

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Organisers of a local festival held in memory of a Sudbury musician have announced Scouting for Girls as this year’s headline act.

LeeStock festival, which has been held at Melford Hall for the last two years, remembers 21-year-old Lee Dunford, who died from Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2006.

It also raises thousands of pounds for the Willow Foundation – a charity which provides support for seriously ill young adults through special day experiences.

One of the event’s organisers, Pete Keogh, hopes well-known indie band Scouting for Girls will appeal to a wide audience.

He said the reaction to the news had been very positive, with sold out early bird tickets indicating this year’s turnout is likely to match last year’s 1,000 visitors.

“People were really surprised,” he said. “Typically, we have had 90s indie acts headlining, so this is the most recent act we have had.”

The two-day event, which takes place on May 23 and 24, focuses on local involvement and raising money for a charity which is close to the hearts of many festival-goers.

Pete added: “It is an important event for a community which knew and loved Lee.”

Now in its eighth year, the festival has grown into a weekend-long event with camping and a family area set in the historic grounds of Melford Hall.

In honour of Lee’s involvement with music, LeeStock also plays a key role in promoting local bands.

Pete said they plan to run another battle of the bands competition this year, allowing the winning group to open the festival.

“From our perspective, it’s great for local bands to be able to play on a professional stage,” said Pete.

“There is nothing like it in Sudbury.”