Tonic gig ticket recipient Matt writes about how a free ticket to see Blur restored his faith in humanity.
A photo of the gig poster
Five years ago, Tonic was donated tickets to see Blur at Hyde Park. We gave them away to people who had been having a hard time with their mental health, providing a welcome escape. We also paid the train fare.
Random acts of kindness like this can mean so much to people. They demonstrate that there are people who notice and care, and that we are all connected.
An experience like seeing Blur at Hyde Park can provide a turning point in someone’s recovery.
Here’s how it unfolded…
The original Facebook posts:
A very generous man has just donated Tonic 4 tickets for Blur this Saturday at Hyde Park. We'd like to offer all 4 tickets to people who could do with a day out and who also experience mental illness – after all, music is wonderfully therapeutic. In addition, Tonic Music for Mental Health will contribute £25 per person towards the train fare. Please share if you know anyone who could do with a day out for a bit of Parklife!
A really sweet gesture has just been made by Peter Wroe-Beacon, who has just offered to contribute an additional £5 per person towards the cost of travel. Peter is a 17 year old student / musician & a big part of Tonic – thanks dude x
Unbelievably, we've just been given 2 more tickets (with accessible entrance) for this gig with additional disabled parking! So 6 tickets up for grabs!
Matt’s Blur ticket
Matt, one of the ticket recipients, writes about his experience:
I do not believe in karma or fate, but if I did I guess this would be it.
I know if you want to succeed and overcome your problems you can help yourself, and I live in a place where if you’re having a difficult time there are kind people who are there to support you. One of these is a charity called Tonic Music for Mental Health.
I approached Tonic as I had some big changes in my personal life – I had lost my job, which could arguably be seen as an unfair dismissal after I disclosed a mental health condition (a history of PTSD from an assault and robbery). Tonic were providing an opportunity for someone with mental health difficulties to receive some music therapy, by way of a free ticket to see Blur at Hyde Park.
At 9:40 on Friday I was greeted with a message to say that I had been given a ticket. This gave me a huge sense of excitement and release of emotion. The knowledge that I was to see one of my favourite bands was already therapeutic. To disclose my condition and difficulties to a stranger who truly listened, and to be given something for free, is a real reminder that there are always people trying to make the world a better place. Even when you are at your lowest and have been treated wrongly by others, there will always be an opportunity to have your faith in humanity restored.
The tickets arrived in good time, then I took the bus and boarded the train to Kings Cross. Hyde Park greeted me with tranquil flowers, the smell of a lake and the noise of geese. I had already escaped myself.
Feeling content watching Drenge Rain was holding out The Horrors thudded along drone and synths An ice-cream van greeted us for Blur And he delivered
“Come on, come on, come on Love's the greatest thing” Damon Albarn sang out And we all sang back
On the train home I felt that I finally had some sort of closure after having had my feelings hurt, been fobbed off by doctors, and having endured the isolation that comes with mental illness.
I arrived home with a fresh perspective. I vowed that, when I was earning again, I would donate to Tonic so someone else could experience what I had – a random act of kindness.
Thank you Tonic Music for Mental Health, it was a really nice gesture and I am so grateful.