BY day they do jobs in medicine, sales, IT and teaching, but at the weekend they pick up their musical instruments and perform as 80s covers band, Sledgehammer.

Made up of Russ Fray on vocals, Simon Bays on guitar, Alex Grout on bass and Phil Heard on drums, the group will take to the stage in Garth Park, off Launton Road, Bicester this Saturday for the finale event of the Town Council’s summer programme.

The band will play non-stop for two-and-a-half hours and cover about 30 songs, which could include tunes such as 'We close our eyes' by Go West, Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel and Livin’ on a prayer by Bon Jovi.

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They got together after a conversation at Haddenham Beer festival and months later they played their first gig in Bicester at the Nightingale Pub, in Langford Village, in 2016.

Oxford Mail:

Mr Bays said: “We are an 80s classic pop and rock band and play everything from bands like Erasure, Human League, Depeche Mode, right through to Europe and even Whitesnake. It’s high energy and gets people dancing – we almost have to apologise for playing a slow song."

The band now play gigs extensively across Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and the surrounding area, including private parties, pubs and weddings.

Mr Bays said: “I have been in lots of different bands over the years including the function circuit in London, but Sledgehammer has by far been the most popular and most busy.

“We do try to be very entertaining – we hit you straight in the face with the best songs of the 1980s and try to make you laugh in between songs

“We are really excited to be coming to play in Bicester, it’s our spiritual home and has our biggest fan base. It’s going to be fantastic. And a perfect end to the summer.”

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Bicester’s Mayor Jason Slaymaker said: “I have seen Sledgehammer in action, so I know we are in for a great night.

“Garth Park is a great location for a party, people can bring their own picnic and enjoy a fantastic evening of music and dancing.”

Other events that have taken place in Bicester this summer include the Superhero Activity Day, Bicester Bike Fun Day and Bicester Carnival - which was circus-themed this year.

Saturday's event starts at 7.30pm and food and a bar will be available for people to enjoy.

Tickets cost £10 for adults and £5 for children.

To book, drop into Bicester Town Council's office in The Garth, off Launton Road, or go to

For more information about the band, go to their Facebook page, SledgeHammerBand or view their website, view