Newton-le-Willows DJ set to host an event for Mind Charity

A MAN from Newton-le-Willows is reported to be DJing at an event to raise money for a mental health charity following his own battle with mental illness.

Ian Ascroft, who started out as a ‘bedroom DJ’ producing music from home, will host the event to raise money for Mind Charity.

After asking for help, Ian wanted to help others deal with mental health issues through music and was encouraged by a new friend to organize an event.

Ian said: “My experience with mental health has taught me that I want to help other people who are going through the same situation, going through anything that worries or worries them or that it is affecting their mental health.

“One of the tools that has really gotten me through my darker days and something that I share with my friends is DJing; it was such a positive experience for me.

“During lockdown when I was feeling particularly down and alone I reached out to a house music DJ who was one of the DJs on House FM radio station.

“I initially messaged her thanking her for helping me through lockdown with the music she was playing and I wanted to let her know it helps mental health in general but want to now I try to prevent people from getting to where I’ve been living so they don’t have to fight or feel alone.”

The graphic designer formed the DJ group Good Vibes Good Times with pals Alan Bridge and Gavin Mitchell, with House FM DJ MissRay contributing when he was in the area to encourage people to reach out and turn to music for support.

The trio have performed in Ashton, Liverpool and Southport, with their first Newton gig this month.

St Helens Star: Ian pictured with Alan and GavinIan pictured with Alan and Gavin (Image: Ian Ascroft)

“Music will never let you down”

Referring to the mental health benefits of music, the 46-year-old added: “In my own experience with my mental health, the only thing that really helps me is music; it brings back happy memories for me.

“So I wanted to do something sufficient with music, because it can touch people; Music will never let you down and will always be there for you.

“If it wasn’t for some good friends and the music, I think I’d be somewhere else.”

St. Helens Star: Ian is in a better place and grateful for music and his friendsIan is in a better place and grateful for music and his friends (Image: Ian Ascroft)

A message from Mind

Ian O’Reilly, Mind’s Head of Community and Events Fundraising, said: “We are truly grateful to Ian for deciding to support Mind through a DJ night and we wish him well.

“It continues to be a truly challenging time and many of us will feel the impact of the pandemic on our mental health and well-being, particularly for those of us with pre-existing mental health conditions.

“One in four of us will have a mental health issue every year and it is so important that no one has to deal with it alone.

“Every donation Mind receives allows us to run campaigns to improve services and provide information and support.

“This includes services like Mind Infoline, Legal Line and our online adult peer support community, Side by Side, so we can be there for as many people as possible who need us.”

Ian will host the event at The Balcony on Newton High Street on Friday 27th January followed by a performance at The Cellar in Ashton-in-Makerfield on 4th February.

During the evening, participants will have the opportunity to scan a QR code and donate to Mind. Newton-le-Willows DJ set to host an event for Mind Charity

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