It was a poignant day of memorial and celebration as thousands came together in honour of the son of a Midland postmaster, shot dead during a robbery in a sleepy Worcestershire village.
Fairfield Community Festival, in Fairfield, near Bromsgrove, took on a special meaning with an all day concert to remember heroic Craig Hodson-Walker.
The 29-year-old died after being shot by armed robbers at Fairfield village post office on January 9. His father Ken, 56, was also shot in the leg but survived during the same raid, which shocked the close-knit community.
Craig’s mother Judy, 55, welcomed festival-goers to the all day event at Fairfield Villa recreation ground yesterday and said: “Thank you so much for all your support.
“I hope everyone enjoys every band and every moment of the day. Craig, my dear boy. This is for you. I will love you always.”
Local musician Kevin Pearson organised the event to honour Craig but to also lift the community from the dark moments it had faced at the beginning of the year.
He was inundated with local bands willing to perform to the 2,500 ticket event, which included everything from folk to jazz, choirs, morris dancers and soft rock.
Mrs Johnson, who runs Fairfield Guest House, said: “Fairfield is a unique village, in that, after the tragedy, the villagers pulled together to reopen the post office and volunteered to keep it going while Ken was in hospital and Judy was coping with the trauma of the events.
“Today is another time to give credit to the people who live here and everything they do. It is wonderful to see everyone come out to honour Craig.”
She added: “At least something positive can come out of such negative events with money raised for two important charities like Ladies Fighting Breast Cancer and the RSPCA.”
Christopher Morrissey, 31, of Elmay Road, Sheldon; Declan Morrissey, 33, of Shirley Park Road, Solihull; Anselm Ribera, 33, of Druids Lane, Druids Heath; and Adrian Snape, 24, of Camelot Way, Small Heath; have been charged with murder, attempted murder and attempted robbery and are awaiting trial in connection with the Fairfield incident.