Time called on a summer jazz festival tradition in Maeshafn

Reporter:

Staff reporter (Leader Live)

A team of fundraising Lions is pulling the curtain down on a popular family jazz festival after an incredible 22 years.

Buckley and Mold Lions Club has raised more than £40,000 for local charities thanks to Jazz on a Summer’s Afternoon, an event which has been held annually at the Miner’s Arms, Maeshafn, usually on the first Sunday in August.

However, the decision has now been taken that last year’s event was the last and Lions club member Geoff Rutherford, who started the event with his wife Maureen when they were the licensees of the Miner’s Arms, said the event has come to its natural end.

Geoff said: “It’s been fantastic and as a small Lions club we simply haven’t got enough members to carry it on.

“We always held the event on the last Sunday in July until the Mold Blues festival came along which caused a clash so we moved to the first Sunday in August.

“People always supported us and we raised so much money for charities such as Save the Family, The Air Ambulance, Nightingale House Hospice and Hearing for the Deaf as well as other good causes.

“It’s just getting harder to organise these events and we do a lot of other festivals. We do food at Mold’s Blues Festival and Mold Carnival so as a Lions club we are still very active and we are still raising as much money for good causes as we can.”

He added: “It just feels like the right time to call it a day, while we are on top really. We have had so much support from sponsors and local firms such as Tent’s & Events and we couldn’t have done it without them.

“And of course the Original Panama Jazz Band, which was formed on the Wirral in 1954, attended and played at every one of the 22 Jazz on a Summer’s Afternoon events that we held.

“It’s been a big thing for Maeshafn and the area and we’d like to thanks everyone who has supported us over the years.”

And Geoff says he wants to get the word out that there will be no more Jazz on a Summer’s Afternoon events so some long-term supporters don’t waste a taxi journey. He said: “Malcolm Short, of Deeside has attended every single Jazz on a Summer’s Afternoon, and I’m worried he won’t be aware of the fact we have stopped holding the event.

“Malcolm came up in a taxi and played the sheep bones along with the bands and has become something of a legend with the regular crowd who supported the event.

“He’s a lovely guy and saved up his loose change throughout the year which he donated to Buckley and Mold Lions.

“I wanted to get the message out so people like Malcolm don’t have a wasted journey.”

See full story in the Chester Leader

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