The first Speedwell concert received great support with 70 people attending, despite the decision to move indoors because of a weather forecast for heavy rain. Folk band Back Ground Music, led by Jackie Setter, entertained the audience before chairman of the trustees at Speedwell, Mike Jones welcomed everyone and gave a brief history of the Grade 2 listed building, which was formerly a milliners and hat shop. Mike explained that the purpose of ‘Music In Speedwell’ was to raise funds towards the renovation costs of the hall in Abbey Street and the upkeep of its grounds and gardens.
Singer, songwriter, guitarist and harmonica player Julian Dawson began the star line-up of performances. The afternoon programme of live music continued with One Tree Hill, a four piece acoustic band that played old pop, ska and reggae, the South Somerset Community Choir directed by Jonathan Delbridge and Yeovil Ukulele Band. Local singer Victoria Starr brought the concert to a close with songs from the 50s and 60s.
The concert raised more than £1,300 towards the £45,000 needed for the renovation of the hall, which will involve replacing the main hall floor and redecorating the premises. Christine Rawe, a trustee and the secretary of Speedwell said: “We are very pleased with how well it went and how much it was enjoyed by the people who came.” Positive comments received by the trustees after the event included one from a lady called Ann who said: “What a wonderful way to spend an afternoon. Well done to all who organised the event.” While Liz from Combe St Nicholas remarked: “The quality of all the acts was very high.” Speedwell hall was bequeathed to the young ladies of Crewkerne in the early 20th Century. It is available to hire for events, meetings and parties and is home to many local groups and organisations.