Inspiring Music Hub - our mission

A Music Education Hub (information from the Arts Council) involves groups of organisations working together to create joined-up music provision, respond to local need and fulfil the objectives of the hub as set out in “The Importance of Music” a national plan for music education, published by the government in November 2011.

It sets out a central vision for schools, arts and education organisations to drive excellence in music education.

Its aspiration is to create a system that encourages everyone, whatever their background, to enjoy music and help those with real talent to flourish.

Music Hubs are expected to form strong partnerships with schools, music organisations, practitioners, local authorities and communities to provide quality music education.

We were appointed by the Arts Council England as the Music Hub for Central Bedfordshire in 2011 and our current funding will continue until 2020.

How we are funded

Arts Council

Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives.

They support a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections.

They invest money from government and the National Lottery in arts and culture across England. This funds a wide range of activities – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, crafts to collections; and helps achieve their mission of Great art and culture for everyone.

Find out more by visiting The Arts Council England’s website.

Royal Opera House Bridge

Funded by the Arts Council England, Royal Opera House Bridge is based in Purfleet, Essex and works across Essex, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and North Kent.

Royal Opera House is one of ten national ‘Bridges’ that work across England to connect children and young people with great art and culture. Working directly with professionals in the Arts, Culture and Education sector they help support and strengthen networks and opportunities, through investment and advocacy.

Find out more by visiting the Royal Opera House Bridge’s website.

What we do 

As mentioned, we are DFE funded which is then administered by Arts Council England. This funding is specifically used to deliver the core and extension roles, and our performance is measured annually against fixed targets.

The reason for this is the belief that no single organisation can deliver everything a young person might want or need from music, so we work in partnership with schools and other music organisations, responding wherever possible to the needs of schools and young people.

These core and extension roles are to:

  • ensure that every child aged 5 to 18 has the opportunity to learn a musical instrument (other than voice) through whole class ensemble teaching programmes for at least a year of weekly tuition on the same instrument
  • ensure that clear progression routes are available and affordable to all young people
  • provide opportunities to play in ensembles and to perform from an early stage both in school and outside
  • develop a singing strategy to ensure that every pupil sings regularly and that choirs and other vocal ensembles are available in the area
  • offer CPD to school staff, particularly in supporting schools to deliver music in the curriculum
  • provide a subsidised instrument hire service accessible to those on low incomes
  • provide access to small and large scale high quality music performance experiences for pupils in local and professional venues, and opportunities for them to work with professional musicians.

How practically do we deliver these core and extension roles?

As the lead organisation in the Music Hub for Central Bedfordshire, Inspiring Music:

  • directly provides services
  • work with partner organisations locally, regionally and nationally
  • signpost to opportunities locally, regionally and nationally 
  • gathers and collate information which we share with our customers e.g. information about local music groups and events

Music in schools

We directly provide a service which includes whole class tuition, small group tuition and singing activities in schools, out of school music groups and ensembles, and a range of concerts and other opportunities, such as instrumental days.

Music opportunities with partner organisations

Our other partners are Central Bedfordshire schools, local music tutors and music and arts organisations and national music education providers.

Find out more about our partners.

Inspiring Music Centres

There are four Inspiring Music Centres in Central Bedfordshire:

They offer activities on Saturday mornings and are open for 30 weeks per academic year and provide ensemble and performance opportunities to students in addition to school work. 

The Inspiring Music Centres provide for students of all standards, from beginner upwards, with a wide range of opportunities to develop musicianship and playing skills.

Income drawn in from students does not cover the running costs of the music centres.

We are very grateful to the Leighton-Linslade Town Council who currently contribute £8,000 per annum to make up the shortfall for this centre. This enables us to offer Special Educational Needs opportunities at this centre.

The other three centres are heavily reliant on Arts Council Subsidy with over £29,000 per year currently being required to continue this council service. 

Youth and Community Music Activities

Bedfordshire has a wide and varied musical programme, with opportunities for students to take part in orchestras, bands, youth opera, festivals and more. There are activities for different ages and abilities, and these are extremely valuable for the progress of young players.

Holiday activities

There are a number of holiday course providers which we proactively promote on our website and through our social media channels. We have a list of these under the holiday courses section of this website.