HUNDREDS of music fans flocked to the ‘beating heart’ of the city to join one of Portsmouth’s newest festivals.
More than 30 acts – including international rock heavyweights The Hoosiers – packed into Portsmouth’s Guildhall for the first Beating Heart festival.
Artists were showcased across five indoor stages, each with their own flavour, from acoustic performances, and popular covers to head-banging rock acts.
The event – which was raising money for two charities – was celebrated by musicians and punters for its fresh spin on the traditional one-day festival.
Richard Morris, of Portsmouth, was one of those performing at the Saturday spectacle. He said: ‘I thoroughly enjoyed it. I love performing at the Guildhall.
‘For a local festival, in one place, the number of acts they managed to get inside the hall was pretty impressive.
‘And for local bands to be playing alongside big, international acts, was a brilliant opportunity. Big up Pompey.’
More than 600 people attended the day, which was raising money for Cash for Kids – that helps countless needy young people in Hampshire – and Portsmouth Cultural Trust, which is tasked with maintaining the Guildhall.
Charlotte Stamp, event organiser, said the festival had surpassed her expectations – so much so that her team has now started planning for next year’s show.
‘We want to make it bigger and better,’ she said. ‘We’ve been overwhelmed by the money that was made on the day and the generous donations that was put in the buckets.’
She added the scale of the area’s musical talent was at an all-time high.
She said: ‘The local talent is so, so good. A lot of the acts that were on last night were in the process of being signed or they had agents there looking at them. It’s really exciting that so much talent is coming through from the city.’
Co-organiser Craig Paterson was stunned by the support of the city.
He said: ‘I had a shiver down my spine when I saw everyone partying and really enjoying themselves.’
Other bands on show included The Dead Freights, Blackfoot Circle and Jerry Williams.
At least £6,000 was generated for charity during the fundraiser, with festival bosses still to tally up the exact total.
Organisers hope to book more acts for 2018’s show and expand the stages.