Heanor teen’s life-changing story becomes BBC animation

18-year-old Mollie Fenwick is the subject of a new BBC animation which tells the story of how music helped her turn her life around.
18-year-old Mollie Fenwick is the subject of a new BBC animation which tells the story of how music helped her turn her life around.

A Heanor woman whose love of music helped turn her life around after troubled teenage years has had her story turned into a BBC animation.

Mollie Fenwick, 18, was the subject of a short film produced to mark BBC Music Day on Thursday, June 15.

It tells the story of how her life was transformed after she got involved with Derby-based music education organisation Baby People.

Mollie said:“I hope that it shows other young people who enjoy music and suffer with their mental health that it can be an escape from feeling down or anxious, and that it can be a kind of therapy for some people.”

As a youngster, Mollie had spent some time in care and went off the rails when she was subjected to bullying.

She eventually ran away, and was drawn into minor crime but was lucky when the police let her off with a warning - an experience which made her rethink the direction she was heading in.

Mollie said: “It was kind of a wake-up call. I decided I needed to do something better with my life.”

She eventually came into contact with Baby People, which provides opportunities to take part in creative activities and gain qualifications.

Mollie said: “I didn’t want to be one of those kids who grew up in care, being angry, getting in fights and wrecking my whole future because of a stupid criminal record.

“So that’s why I started getting involved with music a lot more.”

She added: “When I was a kid, I didn’t’ really express myself a lot at home. I couldn’t really tell people how I felt.

“I started writing songs to put down my thoughts. I like writing. It can take a lot of things off your mind.”

Mollie soon became a role model for other young people, gaining four GCSEs and Arts Awards.

She is now working on a college-level qualification so she can start a foundation course in music and performing arts at university.

Even after falling pregnant at the age of 15, the music project helped Mollie and now she is living independently, balancing her studies with looking after her 18-month-old baby.

Baby People runs one of 350 music projects supported by the national charity Youth Music for young people in challenging circumstances.

Director Julian Butt said: “Mollie’s done remarkably. She was pretty much set to achieve no GCSEs. She wasn’t in an environment where she could even sit them.

“She’s a good role model now for some of the other young people.”

Youth Music chief executive Matt Griffiths added: “It’s heart-warming to learn how Mollie overcame the challenges she faced and I admire her strength of character, and the way she has moved her life forward in a positive direction.”

BBC Music Day is a celebration of music’s place in British life. To view the film and find out more go to http://bbc.in/2rlc7u6.