Sudbury music festival will pay tribute to Arran Tosh
A music festival is to be held in Sudbury in memory of Arran Tosh, the teenager who died days after being diagnosed with a brain tumour.
The Smile festival has been organised by Arran’s sister, Abbie, who says she cannot wait to share Arran’s story and to see what they have achieved.
Sharing its name with the Smile of Arran charity set up after the teenager’s death, the festival has already sold out of its discounted early bird adult tickets, with Wagner from ITV’s X Factor announced as one of the headline acts.
Arran died in 2014, aged 13 – just days after a brain tumour was discovered following an opticians appointment.
He was known for his charity efforts and for his love of music, busking with his friends in Sudbury to raise money for the Cancer Research UK charity shop.
Now Abbie is determined to celebrate her brother by sharing his love for music.
Many of the acts have connections to Arran, including the first act to take to the stage, Toby Halls.
Toby was one of Arran’s band mates and he will be performing with his new band.
Alli Burke and the Bijoux Toots have supported the charity and will also perform, while Pat O’Neill will be travelling from Scotland to take part.
O’Neill gave Arran his first guitar and was instrumental in encouraging the youngster to take up music.
“It’s going to be a very family and community-orientated event – that’s what I want it to be about,” said Abbie, 21.
“I wanted to bring everyone together to have a lovely day to celebrate Arran. This is perfect as he loved music. What better way is there to share his memories and legacy?”
Abbie has taken a break from studying paediatric nursing at Glasgow Caledonian University.
“It got to a point where I needed a break to deal with the loss of Arran,” she said. “It has done me the world of good.”
“We have so many supporters who help out and organise so many different things each year.”
Another connection to Arran comes from the festival logo, which has been designed by Freya Belton, 11, from St Andrew’s Primary School in Great Yeldham, where Arran used to attend.
The school’s Oak class held a competition to create the logo, with Freya winning.
As well as a day full of music, there will be a number of stalls and games, as well as bouncy castles.