Emsworth back with events as ‘UK’s first official Red Nose town’

The cash presentation after the last Red Nose Day event in Emsworth, in 2015
The cash presentation after the last Red Nose Day event in Emsworth, in 2015
Picture: Malcolm Wells

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A TOWN is calling on members of the community to band together and ‘get funny for money’ at a three-day event in support of Comic Relief.

For the second time – the first was in 2015 – Emsworth will continue its work as the UK’s first official Red Nose town during Emsworth Comic Relief 2017.

One the of the shop fronts in 2015

One the of the shop fronts in 2015

The event, which will see residents work with traders and businesses, is organised by the team behind arts festival WemsFest.

They work alongside the Emsworth Business Association to deliver a weekend full of Red Nose Day fun and hope to raise more than the £15,000 they did in 2015.

Mark Millington-Ringwood, artistic director for WemsFest, said: ‘In 2014 I approached Comic Relief and asked if Emsworth could become the UK’s first official Red Nose town. They said yes.

‘It’s a way of injecting life, colour and humour into the area at what can often be a miserable time of year.

‘Across the weekend lots of things will be happening all over the town. All being well, lots of shops will be decked out in red.

‘An example of how businesses get involved is The Greenhouse Cafe; they will become the Redhouse Cafe and raise the prices of their cheese and tomato sandwiches for charity.’

The 62-year-old event organiser added: ‘On Friday evening we’ve got our Outdoor Silent Disco in St Peter’s Square, where people of all ages can come together to have a great time – you don’t get many opportunities like that.

‘Also that evening and on Saturday we have our two comedy nights at The Hewitt’s on South Street, with a top bill of comedians.

‘Sunday sees even more activities, so people should come along. It’s about encouraging everyone to think outside the box and be creative in supporting the charities Comic Relief do, here and abroad.

‘The event is bi-annual and in 2015 we raised £15,000. This year I’m confident we can raise even more.’

Those set to perform at the comedy nights are James Alderson, Sunjai Arif, Rosie Wilby, Wendy Wason, Stephen Carlin, Sami Stone, Jeff Lane and Joe Wells.

On behalf of the Emsworth Business Association, Alistair Gibson said: ‘Two years ago Emsworth became the UK’s first official Red Nose town and put on an amazing community-inspired three days of fundraising and laughter.

‘It’s the sort of thing Emsworth does so well and I’m sure this year will be another enormous giggle.’

Red Nose Day is on Friday. For information about the events taking place Friday-Sunday, and to purchase tickets, visit wegottickets.com.