Over £15,000 was raised to combat homelessness on Friday night through an all-star DJ battle between Manchester and Liverpool.
Leading the two teams were Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and Mayor Steve Rotheram of the Liverpool City Region. Over 900 partygoers witnessed the two teams take to the decks.
At Liverpool’s Camp and Furnace venue, celebrities from the worlds of music, sports, television and radio performed songs for an enthusiastic crowd that included members of Blossoms, Craig Charles, Jamie Webster, John Barnes and others.
Manchester’s lineup included M People’s Heather Small, former Corrie actress Sally Lindsay, BBC Radio 5 Live presenter Nihal Arthanayake, Olympian Diane Modahl, and presenter Matt White. Liverpool’s lineup included singers Rebecca Ferguson and Peter Hooton, as well as world champion boxer Natasha Jonas.
Steve Rotheram, Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said:
“There isn’t a doubt in my mind that Team Liverpool should take home the victory – after all, we are the undisputed home of British music! Nowhere has achieved more number one hits, secured more weeks in the charts or produced the greatest pop band to ever walk the earth. To put it simply, music is in our DNA.
“Putting our friendly rivalries to one side, I think the real winners on the night were always going to be the incredible charities we’ve been able to support. We’ve been blown away by people’s generosity and those donations will help to make a massive difference to those special organisations who are helping some of the most vulnerable in our society. We know this money isn’t a magic wand, however, this is as much about raising awareness of the wonderful work they do day-in-day-out. It shows what can be achieved when two of the North’s great cities come together for a good cause.”
In the upcoming days, the DJ Battle winner for this year will be revealed on social media. Previous events have raised more than £25,000 in total, with proceeds from ticket sales, donations made via the DJ Battle’s JustGiving page, and text donations all going towards supporting initiatives to combat homelessness and end the need for rough sleeping.
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said:
“It was great to take on Steve and team Liverpool in their own back yard and put on an incredible show. To see around 1,000 revellers in the crowd, who have all helped to raise money to tackle rough sleeping and homelessness in both of our city-regions, was beyond belief. The amount of money raised has been incredible and will make such a big difference for the Mayor’s Charity and other great initiatives across Greater Manchester and the North-West tackling rough sleeping and homelessness.
“My sincere thanks go to everyone who took part, including our very own Blossoms, Sally Lindsay, Heather Small, Diane Modahl, and more who made the journey to Merseyside, as well as the legends that are Craig Charles and John Barnes.”
The Mayors’ efforts are a cohesive and innovative response to the problem of homelessness in the various regions. The current financial crisis is posing ever-tougher challenges for communities.
Thanks to the innovative methodology of Mayor Rotheram’s Housing First programme, hundreds of residents in the Liverpool City Region who were experiencing the most severe forms of homelessness were able to move into their own homes, with 90% of them managing to maintain their tenancy. This is in addition to the area’s Assertive Outreach Service, which has assisted hundreds of individuals who were either rough sleeping or at risk of doing so by finding them temporary housing and offering mental and physical health support.
The Community Foundations for Lancashire and Merseyside will donate funds raised from the DJ Battle to charitable organisations and neighbourhood associations throughout the Liverpool City Region. Because of their industry knowledge, they are able to identify and connect with local charities, even those that are less well-known and operate at the grassroots level, ensuring that charitable donations result in long-lasting change.
The proceeds will support A Bed Every Night, the flagship programme of the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity, up the M62. Since its peak in 2017, this innovative programme has assisted in addressing homelessness throughout the region. A Bed Every Night was established in 2018 by Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham to offer emergency housing to anyone who is rough-sleeping anywhere in the city-region, regardless of their social status. Emergency accommodation provides people with guaranteed shelter, food, and all-around support to help them transition into more permanent housing, and it costs about £30 per night.
It has aided almost 6,000 people since 2020; in the past year alone, 2,910 people have received support. Currently, 658 individuals who might otherwise be at risk of rough sleeping are housed in A Bed Every Night.
Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity, with campaigns, events, and challenges that have raised millions of dollars to date, is unwavering in their resolve to address the issues posed by growing adversity.
Fran Darlington-Pollock, Chief Executive of Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity, said:
“The energy and the atmosphere in the room was electric and it was fantastic to see so many people come together to help others. Few people can resist the friendly rivalry between the two city regions and last night was no exception with an amazing night of music and banter. We so appreciate the time and effort that everyone put in at no cost so the charities could benefit at the highest level so thank you!”
Actor, presenter and DJ Craig Charles said:
“I was delighted to be involved. Music brings everyone together and that’s what we saw here tonight. Homelessness is an issue which needs to be tackled and this event will allow charities across both Liverpool and Manchester to support people.”
Singer Jamie Webster said:
“Who doesn’t love a home crowd, it was fantastic to see everyone enjoying themselves, especially when it’s raising money to tackle homelessness which is such an important cause. Obviously, Liverpool will always be the winner in my eyes, but it was great to see the Mayors come together on such a big issue.”
World champion boxer Natasha Jonas said:
“What a great idea to raise money to help support people experiencing homelessness. I loved being involved in the DJ Battle, the atmosphere was amazing!”
Singer Heather Small said:
“It was a privilege to represent Manchester over such an important issue and I hope the event beats last year’s total with the money raised!”
Actor Sally Lindsay said:
“Homelessness is a growing issue, and a hidden one. It’s not just about rough sleeping as there are many people sofa surfing with friends or family who are still homeless. I hope the DJ Battle raises awareness as well as funds to help people move forward.”