A TWO-day festival of music and creativity designed to raise spirits of people isolated at home, has raised more than £3,000 for charity.

The weekend’s Lockdown Festival featured more than 100 artists over four stages – all broadcast online from homes and gardens.

Highlights included DJ sets from reggae, ska and dancehall aficionado Count Skylarkin, Latin groove specialists El Nino, DJ Binge of the Dutty Moonshine Big Band, and drum & bass turntablist DJ Katalyst. There was also live music from Oxford band Catgod, Americana artist Sean Duggan of Oxford’s Loud Mountains, acoustic artists Call me Tiece, Sam Pennant, Bronwyn Leonard and rockers Madame Jesus.

This was accompanied by aerial acrobatics from Morgan Barbour, art demonstrations from Matthew Draws Oxford, aerobics from the Lycra 80s Party, sing along karaoke, belly dancing from Tahaty, meditation, yoga and an inspirational talk on staying positive during the coronavirus lockdown by engaging Oxford lifestyle and fashion blogger Hannah Austin.

Oxford Mail:

Audience members pledged donations throughout the weekend, with almost £2,100 raised for Oxfordshire Mind and about £800 for NHS Charities Together. Money is still coming in.

Read more: Bandit the wonder ferret is running a full marathon for kids' book charity

The event was organised by music lover Lorraine Baker from her garden in Botley, who addressed the audience throughout the weekend.

She said: “It was a virtual festival live streamed to people’s living rooms. We did it to spread some love, and it went very well. I was so overwhelmed by the support and rather emotional in the last speech I gave.”

She was helped by her close team of Hannah Davies, Ed Maier, Sam Cross and four stage managers.

Lorraine added: “All of the hard work paid off and we made so many people smile. My phone hasn’t stopped buzzing with messages.

“We doubled our target for Oxfordshire Mind and just about reached our target for NHS Charities Together. I’m very proud of our achievement and kind of sad that it’s all come to an end now.

Oxford Mail:

“I literally have no idea what I’m going to do with all of my time now. I’ll have to find another project I suppose.”

She added: “If anyone missed anything, every act that played at the festival is available to re-watch on our Facebook page.”

Read more: Tune into Oxford's DJ Dom every week for the ultimate kitchen disco

In his Sunday evening DJ set, Count Skylarkin – Aidan Larkin – thanked Lorraine and her team for their efforts and urged people to donate. The DJ, a familiar face at Oxford’s Cowley Road Carnival, many of the UK's best festivals, and the city’s Hi-Lo Jamaican Eating House, said: “It’s wonderful to be back with you. I miss you all.”

Paul Andrews, from Southmoor, near Abingdon, said: “For those of us who are frustrated gig-goers and social hounds, it gave a much needed chance, over a beverage or two, to imagine we were stood next to friends, listening to and enjoying some great live bands.

"It was a brilliant idea which raised loads of money for charity at the same time.”

Read more: Original tandoori pioneer keeps Oxford fed and helps NHS

Lucy Silver from north Oxford was among those enjoying the fun. She said: “It was the ultimate feel-good weekend. It was almost as good as being at a real festival and raised loads of money for two very good causes. Well done to Lorraine and her team for pulling off this amazing logistical and technical feat.”