Happy Choristers – Funding boost for Choral Music

15th June 2023

Twenty six cathedrals will benefit from the announcement today of grants totalling almost £450,000 to ensure the future of its choral music tradition and to inspire the next generation.

Funding boost for Choral Music

The funding boost from the Cathedral Music Trust will assist 26 choral foundations, support 50 professional posts, enrich over 250 weekly choral services and support over 1,000 young choristers and many more thousands of young people through community work.

Highlights of this year’s grants include helping rebuild Sheffield Cathedral‘s music department (£30,000 over two years), investing in school engagement programmes in Newcastle (£21,500) and Bradford (£15,000) and enabling Welsh cathedrals to establish new lay clerk positions – in Bangor and St Asaph (£15,000 each).

It will also support Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral (£25,000) in developing a new choral/organ studentship pathway for former choristers.

A spokesperson for Sheffield Cathedral said:

“Sheffield Cathedral is on a musical journey, taking singing into schools to re-invigorate local music making, and to develop cathedral choirs which truly represent the diverse communities we serve. Music-making helps children to build confidence and to thrive. We are delighted Cathedral Music Trust is supporting us on this journey.”

Happy Choristers - Funding boost for Choral Music

Other Testimony:

“We could not sustain the high standard expected, nor include children from such a breadth of backgrounds, without your generous help. This grant will ensure that the choristers will build on their success both vocally and spiritually.”St Davids Cathedral

We want to ensure that family income and background are not a barrier to young people in Merseyside encountering inspiring choral music. The Cathedral Music Trust’s grant ensures that this can remain the case, through your support of our outreach choirs.”Liverpool Cathedral

“This funding will enable us to continue developing our schools outreach programme, increasing access to singing for those children who might otherwise never encounter it.”Bradford Cathedral

“This grant will allow us to develop pathways for our former choristers, enabling them to continue their involvement in cathedral music, and for the cathedral to benefit from their training, commitment and loyalty built up over their many years of service.” – Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral.

“This grant will enable us to continue to provide the highest quality singing tuition to all members of our choirs.”Worcester Cathedral

Cathedral Music Trust is also grateful to the Edington Music Festival – the oldest festival of music within the liturgy in the world – whose £3,000 award has helped the Trust grant £21,500 to Newcastle Cathedral. This grant will enable every child to receive individual singing tuition from an expert teacher, whilst also revolutionising its Organ and Choral Scholarship programmes.

The Cathedral Music Trust campaigns on behalf of cathedral music, supports choirs and choristers in need and encourages the pursuit of excellence in choral and organ music.
It is indebted to the Friends of Cathedral Music and the Diamond Fund for Choristers.

Last September the Cathedral Music Trust published the Future for Cathedral Music which was the result of extensive research to identify gaps in provision for cathedral musicians of all ages. In response, the Trust is now in the process of developing a number of educational initiatives to inspire the next generation. The initiatives are aimed at opening up pathways into choristerships for young people of all backgrounds and supporting the development of early career conductors, singers and organists across the country.

You can view the full grants list here.