SINGERS and musicians from across the town came together this weekend to raise around £12,000 for the Brighter Futures radiotherapy appeal.

Getting underway at 9am on Saturday, the collection of talented individuals and groups played and sung their way through a 24-hour music marathon.

Organisers had set their sights on a fundraising total of £10,000 and by 10.30am they were well underway with £2,300 in the bank.

But it was at 1am, while most people were warmly tucked up in bed for the night, that the £10,000 target was passed. It would ultimately keep rising to around the £12,000 mark with some final donations still to arrive. For Rachel Burbidge, one of the organising trio, it was an achievement that had been a year in the making.

“A year ago, Dawn and Robin and I got together and formed a trio to play at a similar event in London,” she said.

“We thought it was a rather fun day out so we thought maybe we could do something similar for a local charity - straight away we thought of Brighter Futures.

“Once we’d settled on the venue and found a date we set about getting local musicians to take part.

“It really took off, by August the number of applications coming in started to get a bit out of control.

“Lots of people are doing some really amazing sponsorship - it’s fantastic.”

Some of the performers were well known on the Swindon music map, others bright new stars tentatively taking their first steps into performing.

Among them was Robert Buckland, a keen singer for many years but better known by most as the MP for South Swindon.

Robert pitched in on Saturday morning with a collection of timeless classics from The American Songbook, much to the delight of the audience looking on.