After many months of planning and a great deal of effort in the preceding days, the 2009 Wish Tree Charity Outdoor Evening of Live Music took place on 27 June 2009 at the beautiful grounds of Pound Farm in the village of Flamstead. The event featured two musical groups to entertain a sold-out crowd of over 350. Musical guests were the Hendon Band of the Salvation Army and a local cover band, Sticky Jack, a high-quality 5-piece group from Hertfordshire.
Radio 1 disc jockey Dominic Byrne opened the night’s proceedings, introducing both of the musical groups and a beneficiary of the Wish Tree Charity, Alister Coulter. Coulter shared how the Wish Tree Charity had supported him after he lost his wife to breast cancer in the spring of 2008. A member of the Hendon Band, Coulter went on to introduce the band, under the leadership of Bandmaster David Rudd.
The weather during the day had been beautiful with glorious sunshine. The sunshine stayed right up until the Hendon Band’s first note, at which point the heavens opened with rain, hail, thunder and lightning! After just 10 minutes the assembled picnickers were forced to flee to the relative safety of surrounding gazebos while being battered by hailstones. The band was forced to stop as the deafening noise rattled down.
Some time later the music resumed as the band continued to entertain those stalwarts who had showed the “Best of British” and stayed on to enjoy the concert, despite continuing rain and occasional lightning accompaniment. Items from the Hendon Band included Salvation Song, Dance Before the Lord, The Redcliffe March, Lightwalk, Come Beautiful Christ and Tomado de la Mano.
After the completion of this interesting and varied program of brass music, Stick Jack delighted all with their exceptional and varied repertoire including covers of numbers by Snow Patrol, Robbie Williams and The Commitments. All the more impressive was the fact that some members of the group had to play on borrowed instruments, as some of their gear had been put temporarily out of action by the huge downpour.
What could have been a disaster turned into an extremely enjoyable evening, with about £7,000 raised for the Wish Tree Charity.