A UKULELE group is set to bring a little sunshine to Newquay this January with a special fundraising concert at a local beach.

The St Merryn Ukes will perform an exclusive charity gig at Lusty Glaze on Monday, January 28 in aid of Children’s Hospice South West.

Set up by Dave Healy in April 2017, the St Merryn Ukes started out as just four friends meeting weekly to jam. They now have almost 50 regular members and perform all over the South West at charity festivals, village fêtes, private parties and more.

Mr Healy said: “I’ve been a musician for over 35 years. I wanted to create a group that could give something back to the local community here.

“One of the main aims of getting the group together, apart from an excuse to play yet more music, was to raise money for local charities. It’s amazing how quickly our little band has grown.”

Every member pays £2 into the charity pot at each weekly rehearsal and, combined with extra fundraising from special events like the concert at Lusty Glaze, they have presented over £1,500 to Children’s Hospice South West over the past 18 months.

Mr Healy said they are hoping to ‘at least match’ that total in 2019.

Playing everything from well-loved classics to Cornish songs with a ukulele twist, around 25 of the St Merryn Ukes will be bringing all the Hawaiian vibes to Lusty Glaze Beach at the end of January.

St Merryn Uke member Dave Maddock-Brown added: “Ordinarily I would never have picked out a Hawaiian shirt to wear but, when I put it on, I really feel a part of something special. It’s incredible to know that what’s started out as a fun hobby for a lot of us has turned into making a difference by doing something we love.”

Events manager Robin Parris said: “It’s the first time we’ve ever had the St Merryn Ukes at the beach so we’re really excited for a night of summery sounds which will definitely banish those January blues!

“As a nod to ‘gin-uary,’ all proceeds from gin and tonics will also be donated to Children’s Hospice South West.”

Entry to the event on Monday, January 28 is completely free with charitable donations welcome on the night. Music will start around 7.30pm.

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