THE summer season at a unique and beloved outdoor venue was nearly cancelled this year - but was “rescued” thanks to the generosity of a local firm.

The Friends of Scarr Bandstand, the group which has worked to bring the century-old ampitheatre in Sling back into use in recent years, were worried that this summer’s events might not be able to go ahead, after a grant application to pay for a temporary roof was unexpectedly rejected.

The roof, which the Friends describe as “vital” to be able to host events there to keep performers and equipment dry, was simply unaffordable for them as a registered charity.

But thankfully, the local firm which provides the temporary roof, Wyedean Scaffolding, generously volunteered to provide it ‘gratis’, or free of charge.

A spokesperson for the group said: “Friends of Scarr Bandstand is extremely grateful - and relieved; this generous assistance has allowed a great season of events to go ahead.”

They added that visitors to summer events at the bandstand “are in for a surprise”, following a season of change at the site.

Forestry England (FE) has been busy carrying out necessary works to clear diseased larch trees from areas around the bandstand in recent months.

The Friends say “most of the trees have disappeared!” as a result of the works, but that FE continues to work with them to ensure that the events can go ahead safely and as planned.

The drive up to Scarr Bandstand looks quite different after tree felling in recent months
The drive up to Scarr Bandstand looks quite different after tree felling in recent months (Friends of Scarr Bandstand)

Kicking off the season on June 24 is the returning popular ‘Rising Stars’ event, when the Forest’s brass training bands get their chance to shine.

On July 2, Drybrook & District Male Voice Choir and the Springfield Singers make a welcome return with ‘Songs at the Bandstand’.

Thereafter there will be theatre from anarchic company The Pantaloons and Gloucestershire-based Jenny Wren Productions, more brass with three local bands at ‘Scarr Brass Fest’, a rock, Latin, swing, dance and jazz ‘Musical Extravaganza’, and ‘A Forest Symphony’ with Lydbrook Band.

All the music events are free entry, with donations to help keep the Bandstand going “very gratefully received”.

More information can be found at