From the blog...
GEMFEST is an indoor music and performance festival, held annually on Easter Sunday raising money for charity. The event started as a surprise 30th birthday party for Gemma Wensley organised by her friends and family. Gemma has an inoperable Brainstem Tumour. In 2010 the condition was deemed terminal and she was looking at a matter of months to live. She retired from her job as a Staff Nurse at the RD&E and prepared for the inevitable.
The following months involved gruelling treatment and a long emotional rollercoaster ride. Then miraculously, the tumour started to shrink and Gemma improved drastically. Although she is still receiving treatment related to her illness, she is still here almost 6 years later and is full of life! To her friends and family she is a true inspiration and with their support and her strength she has been able to fight this cruel disease head on! Her success so far is proof of the benefits of being positive and never giving up.
Gemma and her good friend and fellow organiser Susan Luscombe came up with the idea of making “Gemfest” an annual charity event at the end of 2012 and the first public event was held on 31st March 2013 at the Exeter Phoenix Centre who kindly offered the use of the whole building for free. Since then, over £15,000 has been raised for The Brain Tumour Charity and local end of life charity, Hospiscare, who were instrumental in Gemma’s recovery.
The next festival will be held on Sunday 27th March 2016. Supporting this year’s event are sponsors Wilkinson Grant and Auto Paint Repairs and the team are delighted to have them on board. The theme of the year is “Wellies” and the organisers are encouraging everyone to don their Wellington boots for the event!
As usual, Gemfest is a festival of two halves. The daytime (11am-4pm) is a FREE family oriented event for children of all ages. There will be arts and crafts, storytelling, workshops, face painting, games, competitions, live music and much, much more.
The evening event runs from 6pm until late and there will be an eclectic mix of live music over 2 stages, a comedy room, poetry and spoken word, The Silent Disco and other entertainment. Entry is £12 (£10 if you are wearing wellies!).
For further information on the event or if you would like to be involved, please contact the team by clicking here
Tickets are available in advance (50p booking fee) from Exeter Phoenix Centre Box Office (01392) 667080 or clicking here where you can also find venue information.