caroline flack

Caroline Flack Remembered As Famous Friends Hold Festival In Her Honour

today26 July 2022

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Caroline Flack was remembered at a festival named after her and featuring many of her famous friends on Monday.

Stars including Olly Murs, Natalie Imbruglia, Strictly’s Janette Manrara and Aljaž Škorjanec, Fleur East, Louise Redknapp and Joel Dommett performed at the inaugural Flackstock festival, held at Englefield House in Berkshire.

The event was created as a way of honouring the former Love Island presenter, who took her own life in February 2020 at the age of 40.

Opening Flackstock, Caroline’s sister Jody told the crowd that everyone performing was a friend of Caroline’s, saying it was an ideal day “full of dancing”.

Dawn O’Porter, Jody Flack and Natalie Pinkham at Flackstock
Dawn O’Porter, Jody Flack and Natalie Pinkham at Flackstock

Joseph Okpako via Getty Images

She told the PA news agency: “This is who she was, this is what she liked, we are sort of encapsulating her today.

“We have tried to do that from the very beginning, our motto was ‘What would Caroline do?’ the whole way through.

“Today is definitely a good day, there is a lot of bad ones there have been but today is a good one.”

Jody added that there would “hopefully” be another Flackstock in the future.

Dee Koppang O'Leary and Dermot O'Leary
Dee Koppang O’Leary and Dermot O’Leary

David M. Benett via Getty Images

The festival – which helped raise funds for charities Mind, Samaritans, Choose Love and the Charlie Waller Trust – was the brain child of Caroline’s friends, with the committee comprising Dawn O’Porter, Natalie Pinkham, Anna Blue, Sarah Tyekiff and Leigh and Jill Francis, as well as her sister Jody and mum Christine.

Dawn told the PA news agency: “She was such a loved TV personality and I think her death affected so many people, I think it reminded people that what you see is not necessarily what you get.

“I think everyone assumed that Caroline was extremely okay when she wasn’t and I think a lot of people have taken a lot from that.

“She loved festivals more than anything in the world so we thought she should just get her one of her own.”

Olly Murs took to the stage during the festival
Olly Murs took to the stage during the festival

Joseph Okpako via Getty Images

Fleur East on stage
Fleur East on stage

Joseph Okpako via Getty Images

Natalie Pinkham added: “I dreamt about Caroline a lot after she died and this idea came about bringing friends and family together a bit like a memorial service but also that raises a lot of money and awareness for mental health causes.

“It has been a really positive, amazing process. Everyone we asked said yes and that is testament to her personality and how positive Caroline was but also how much people want to counter all the negativity. It’s been great.”

Other attendees included Professor Green, Dermot O’Leary, Kirsty Gallacher, Paddy McGuinness, Noel Fielding and June Sarpong.

Natalie Imbruglia performs
Natalie Imbruglia performs

Joseph Okpako via Getty Images

Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec at Flackstock
Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec at Flackstock

David M. Benett via Getty Images

Janette Manrara, who became friends with Caroline after she won Strictly Come Dancing in 2014, described the event as the “perfect celebration”.

She said: “Every time we hung out non-work wise the first thing she would do was pop on a song start singing, start dancing, she loved music, she loved singing and dancing so I think today is a perfect celebration of that part of her.

“I think every single person performing today knew how special she was and that’s probably why the yes’s came so quick. She loved being at festivals so what better way to celebrate her than having one.”

It was also announced that Sky has recorded the festival for a documentary to air in August.

Help and support:

  • Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393.
  • Samaritans offers a listening service which is open 24 hours a day, on 116 123 (UK and ROI – this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill).
  • CALM (the Campaign Against Living Miserably) offer a helpline open 5pm-midnight, 365 days a year, on 0800 58 58 58, and a webchat service.
  • The Mix is a free support service for people under 25. Call 0808 808 4994 or email help@themix.org.uk
  • Rethink Mental Illness offers practical help through its advice line which can be reached on 0808 801 0525 (Monday to Friday 10am-4pm). More info can be found on rethink.org.

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