Oxjam Winchester Takeover!

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Nicola Manuel and Graham Read were on the scene.

After months of preparation by Oxjam volunteers, the biggest collaboration of local music Winchester has ever heard started with a mellow strum drifting through the library…

A short walk away, the sounds of heavy dubstep blared from Plain & Fancy, with the DJ’s changing every two hours. But if that didn’t tickle your fancy, then from 7:30, Forte Tea Rooms and Slug and Lettuce hosted live bands playing folk and alternative genres respectively.

Four different venues covered a collection of local talent providing them with the ability to play to a fresh audience. Young and old, friends and family, tourists and locals, created a warm atmosphere for the gentle beginnings in the discovery centre.

With a bunch of solo acts leading up to the climax, the show was capped off by the lively Waggonband who certainly got people on their feet. A mix of folk, sailor, acoustic and instrumental styles made a great start to the evening, followed by a wander down to Plain & Fancy for a tasty Oxjam cocktail shaken up with some banging beats.

A further walk down to the Slug and Lettuce made you feel like you were part of a glorious circus with performers, mimes and disco-grannies joyously darting through the high street. In through the vast doors and a few stairs later, the notes from an alternative band greeted you.

A dance and another cocktail later there was a swift move down to the final destination, Forte Tearooms where the folk music was in full swing. The floor throbbed with tapping toes while drinks and cakes were passed round, with the clapping and cheering lasting all the way until closing time. The drunken sailor roused everyone into song, creating the most heart-warming atmosphere of the night.

Oxjam was a fantastic way for local bands to reveal their talents, Winchesterians to have a good time and for Oxfam to raise money and awareness.

Keep an ear out for your local Oxjam takeover, how you can get involved and whether it’ll return to Hampshire’s favourite city!

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