Band strikes right note in funding bid
11 May 2020
Musicians have made a pitch-perfect bid to earn £1,000 towards the cost of encouraging youngsters to take up an instrument and maintain the popularity of brass band music.
Volunteers who run Ellington Colliery Band* have been awarded the cash through Persimmon Homes North East’s Community Champions fund. John Colvine, for the band, said: “We have two ensembles, a full brass band and a training band, consisting primarily of players who are under 16, which is run by volunteer members of our senior band. This year, we have developed our outreach programme and recruited more young people who would like to play a musical instrument. Consequently, our training ensemble continues to thrive and this in turn helps to ensure that our established band continues to flourish."
“We are an inclusive organisation and buy instruments to lend to players who cannot afford to buy their own. We are currently expanding our percussion section and we would like to buy some height-adjustable timpani that can be played by young people and adults. This kind donation will help to ensure that we can continue to provide an environment where young and old can make music together, whatever their background or circumstances.”
Debbie Zaben, sales and marketing director for Persimmon Homes North East, said: “This is exactly what our Community Champions scheme is all about, supporting good causes to make a positive change in the areas we work and live. The band plays at approximately 25 community events each year and reaches in the region of 5,000 audience members. We are pleased that we have been able to offer our support and wish the band continued success.”
Persimmon Homes North East launched Community Champions with a view to helping community groups, charities and good causes across Northumberland and Tyneside. However, as the nation continues to feel the effect of the Covid-19 outbreak, the housebuilder feels that, at the moment, elderly communities are in the most need of support. The change of direction came into effect from April, with the donations for that month going to groups that work with and support the over-70s.
Each month the Newcastle-based builder donates up to £2,000 to community groups across the region. This also happens across Persimmon’s other 31 operating areas, meaning up to £64,000 is dished out every single month – a total of £768,000 a year. Debbie added: “We would urge any group working with older people to visit the Persimmon Homes website and to try and become our next Community Champion.”
*The band is pictured at an event before social distancing.