Thousands turn out for Thumbs Up festival as Stephen Sutton awarded MBE

Staffordshire | News | Published:

On the same day inspirational teenager Stephen Sutton was awarded an MBE, it was fitting that thousands of people gave him the thumbs up at a festival held in his memory.

A day packed with music and entertainment was held at Burntwood Rugby Club in memory of the 19-year-old who lost his brave battle with cancer last month.

Around 3,000 people packed into the grounds of the sports club, with a string of bands taking to the stage on Saturday to entertain the crowds, all in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Stephen was included in this year's Queen's Birthday Honours, announced just hours earlier.

He accepted the honour before his death on May 14, declaring it 'awesome' and giving it the 'thumbs-up'.

And just hours later, Stephen's friends and family were at the Thumbs Up for Stephen Mini Festival.

The teenager's mother Jane Sutton was presented on stage with a bouquet of yellow flowers.

See also: Stephen Sutton awarded MBE after his death from cancer


And she thanked the crowd by saying: "I would just like to say a big thank you to everyone who has come down here today to support Stephen and for all the events over the last few years "

In total nine bands took to the stage including Soul'd Out, The Pelotons, Nick Aslam and tribute bands U2UK and The Bon Jovi Experience.

Stephen's MBE is backdated to the date of his death last month, which touched millions and resulted in a huge boost in donations to the Teenage Cancer Trust.

The teenager, who was diagnosed with bowel cancer at 15, became a household name as he helped raise £4 million for the fight against cancer, staying positive throughout his illness, always smiling and giving the "thumbs up".


Mrs Sutton said she was "truly delighted and immensely proud" that he had been recognised in the honours.

She said: "Shortly before Stephen passed away on May 14 he received a letter from the Cabinet Office asking if he was agreeable to accepting an MBE in recognition of his fundraising and services to the Teenage Cancer Trust.

"He thought it was an incredible honour to have been nominated and it definitely got the 'thumbs up'."

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