Blazefest V – Belfast, Empire Music Hall 21/03/2015


The rock and metal community, perhaps more than any other in the field of music, always has been known for its generosity of spirit and support for worthy causes. For the community in Northern Ireland, few are more special or better supported than Blaze’s Appeal, which raises funds for the Royal Belfast Hospital For SickThe rock and metal community, perhaps more than any other in the field of music, always has been known for its generosity of spirit and support for worthy causes. For the community in Northern Ireland, few are more special or better supported than Blaze’s Appeal, which raises funds for the Royal Belfast Hospital For Sick Children, via the annual Blazefest. The inspiration behind the event is young Blaze Shields-Pettitt, an otherwise lively, rugby-playing and heavy metal-loving little boy who suffers from Severe Bilateral Hydronephrosis, a condition whereby both of his kidneys are stretched and swollen, and which affects one in 600 people. In Blaze’s case, it was diagnosed during ante-natal scans: his condition is complicated by the fact that he also suffers from Vesicoureteral Reflex (VUR), a condition which reverses the flow of urine between the bladder and kidneys. After numerous operations – all of which Blaze faced with a bravery and humour which would be envied by many adults – five years ago his parents, Darren and Dawn, came up with the idea of combining their own lifelong passion for heavy metal with their desire to show their thanks to the nursing teams at the hospital by raising invaluable funds. […]

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