Organisers of the Buckfest Music Festival presented local charities and groups with donations totalling £8,000 at their annual ‘thank you’ party on September 15.

This brings the total amount of money donated over the festival's nine-year history to more than £35,000.

Voted Cambridgeshire's best festival for the last two years, tickets for this year's event sold out within eight hours, which made it the fastest selling event yet. Buckfest started in 2010 with about 100 attendees, one stage and three bands. Since then, the family-friendly festival has grown year-on-year to having 2000 attendees, three stages and 21 bands.

The 'thank you' party took the form of a German-theme night and was held on September 15.

This year's nominated charities were Three Pillars Feeding the Homeless and The Malcolm Whales Foundation, who each received £2,000. A donation of £2,000 was also made to Buckden Village Club and the cash will be used to refurbish the kitchen and purchase new outdoor furniture. Additional donations were also made to Buckden Explorers, Buckden Cricket Club and local resident Molly Smith who suffers from a chronic illness – the money will help Molly with her quest to gain more independence. The festival also sponsored a barrel of beer at the recent Buckden Scouts beer festival.

Damien Whales, from The Malcom Whales Foundation, said: “It was great to be supported by Buckfest, the donation will be used by the Woodlands Centre at Hinchingbrooke Hospital to create a garden for patients and families as part of an overall donation of about £10,000. Receiving a diagnosis of cancer and the subsequent treatment and ongoing tests are often stressful for patients and their loved ones, we hope to provide a tranquil and inviting space for patients and their families when they visit the Woodlands.”

Molly Smith, who couldn't be at the presentation night added: “I'd like to say a huge thank you for the £500 cheque to go towards permanent ramps and a powerchair to improve my quality of life.

Ged Dempsey, from The 3 Pillars Feeding the Homeless Charity, said: “We are grateful for the support that you have given our charity, the significant donation of £2000 will make a huge difference to our Street Friends.”

Rick Holden, chairman of the Buckfest committee he felt extremely proud of what the festival has achieved and thanked everyone involved.

Further details about the two charities are available at: www.malcolmwhales.co.uk and www.the3pillarsfeedingthehomelesstrust.com.

Next year's festival will take place on July 20 and tickets go on sale in the spring. Anyone interested in supporting next year's event as a sponsor or volunteer should contact the organisers by emailing: info@buckfest.org.uk or visit www.buckfest.org.