Sandfest 2018

Date: 16th January 2018

Pop greats line up for Sandfest 2018 in aid of Down’s Syndrome Scotland

The cream of 80s pop will be strutting their stuff at Sandfest 2018 this year, a concert brimming with Scots musical greats in aid of Down’s Syndrome Scotland (DSS), the only charity in Scotland focused solely on the needs of people with Down’s syndrome and their families. Sponsored by Scotmid, Scottish Equity Partners and Craig Corporate, Sandfest 2018 takes place at the illustrious Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on March 18th 2018.


Hosted by Still Game star Sanjeev Kohli, revellers will have the chance to relive the greatest hits from Scot’s pop sensations Grahame Skinner, James Grant, The Bluebells and Clare Grogan, not to mention the resident house band the ‘Sandford City Rockers,’ made up of some of the most talented musicians and vocalists from Aztec Camera, Del Amitri and Love and Money.  More acts will be revealed early in the New Year.


The concert kicks off at 7.15pm with a performance from Ups and Downs Theatre Group’s Choir 21, made up of children and young adults with Down’s syndrome, and their siblings. Formed in 1995, the group have been a hit at many festivals and events across Scotland, including a recent gig at the Motherwell Civic Centre.

Rory Gaffney, Head of Operations at DSS said: “Down’s Syndrome Scotland are delighted to be working with the Sandfest team to bring this musical spectacle to the Royal Glasgow Concert Hall on March 18th.  This is the single biggest fundraiser that we have ever held and it comes during a big year for the charity, as we play host to the 13th World Down Syndrome Congress at the Glasgow SEC between the 25th-27th July 2018. The concert will play a major role in helping raise awareness of Down’s syndrome in Scotland and challenge some of the stigmas that still exist in society today.  We couldn’t do this if it was not for the support of all the musicians, who are giving their time freely to take part. We also want to thank our generous sponsors, Scotmid, Scottish Equity Partners and Craig Corporate.”

The compere for the evening, Sanjeev Kohli from Still Game said: “Sandfest is the cream of Scottish musical talent all in one room and all raising money for an incredibly worthy cause. Despite my best efforts, I’d never been able to make it along, so to be asked to be the compere as Sandfest moves to a bigger venue, is a massive honour. I’ll be there as a fan and the MC. I might even bring my old Yamaha keyboard. I promise not to plug it in though.”

Ken McCluskey, lead singer of The Bluebells added: “Sandfest has evolved and grown in a truly organic way over the last 10 years. Playing live music with friends is a great way to raise awareness for Down’s Syndrome Scotland, as well as help raise funds for the World Down Syndrome Congress being held in Glasgow for the first time this summer.”


Sandfest 2018 is the first of a series of events during Down’s Syndrome Awareness Week, seven days of fundraising and awareness building activities and festivals organised by DSS, which take place across Scotland between 18th – 24th March 2018. The week-long event culminates on World Down’s Syndrome Day (21st March), a global initiative to raise awareness and generate funds for people living with the condition and their families.

Down’s Syndrome Awareness Week plays a major role in helping raise awareness of one of the most frequently recognised but most misunderstood learning disabilities, as well as encouraging communities, schools and organisations to take the time to learn about Down’s syndrome and raise funds.

Later in the year, Glasgow plays hosts to the World Down Syndrome Congress at the SEC from the 24th – 27th July 2018. Now in its 13th year, the congress helps raise awareness of Down’s syndrome, while acting as a platform for experts, families and health workers to share experience and best practice, as well as reveal and discuss the latest research into the condition.

Book your tickets to Sandfest 2018 today at More news and goodies will be revealed on Twitter @DSSscotland or facebook. To make a donation to Down Syndrome Scotland, please text DOWN21 £5 to 70070.