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A Culture of Commitment to Creativity

Published in General on 2013-06-20 by Empty Chairs

More news from Brass Bands England

Strong support for brass bands was shown at a meeting in London last week. Ed Vaizey M.P., Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, invited leaders of Arts Council England and Brass Bands England to Whitehall in order to open conversations on how best to assist brass bands to flourish.

The culture minister welcomed the organisations to the meeting which focused on the spirit of co-operation and reiterated his department’s support. Key to the discussion was ensuring that brass bands feel confident in applying for the financial support available to them via the Arts Council; for example, their successful Grants for the Arts fund. This fund offers smaller grants of up to £15,000 and major grants of up to £100,000, and funds projects which engage people in England in arts activities.

“There is a very rich tradition of brass bands across England and our top bands are the best in the world. We want them to prosper with a new generation of players and for audience members to experience the thrill of listening to their unique music. That’s why we provide core funding to Brass Bands England. Brass Bands can access lottery funding through our Grants for the arts programme and we would welcome more applications” stated Cluny Macpherson, Regional Director, Arts Council England.

Mr Robert Morgan MBE, Chairman of Brass Bands England, highlighted in discussions the importance of funding our bands to develop young players. “Bands need help to ensure that our young players have good instruments and quality tuition available to them. We have a responsibility to our young musicians to offer them the best we can”

One Grants for the Arts achievement which reflects the commitment to children and young people involves Stalham Brass Band and their training initiative. Musical Director, Dr Tim Thirst MBE, used Arts Council funding as part of his creation of a Stalham Training Band.

Tim explained;  “We needed to ensure the future sustainability of Stalham Brass Band by starting a new training programme for 50 local children and young people to mark the Diamond Jubilee year. In this first year of operation 95 children have been trained on this scheme. Funders like Arts Council England have been vital to our success.”

Brass Bands England continues to assist bands to access both local and national funding. The National Liaison Officer’s current Funding Network initiative goes from strength to strength, with bands in the West Midlands, North East, and Yorkshire having benefited from these events, and more meetings to follow in Hertfordshire, Derbyshire, South Yorkshire and Lancashire.  For further details, contact

Photo shows Robert Morgan MBE, Chairman of Brass Bands England, Brass Bands England National Liaison Officer Rachel Veitch-Straw, Ed Vaizey M.P., Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries , and Brass Bands England National Development Officer Philip Watson.

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