The Instrumental Change campaign concludes successfully

Note: This article refers to Leeds College of Music (LCoM), the former name of Leeds Conservatoire

By Kath Hartley


Leeds College of Music has held a successful appeal for musical instruments, which will be redistributed to young musicians across the region who cannot afford their own.

The Instrumental Change campaign began in December, calling upon the public for donations of unused and unwanted instruments that are in good working order – to be used by young musicians at Junior LCoM and other youth music organisations in West Yorkshire.

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The appeal has seen fantastic public support and last Saturday’s instrument donation day at LCoM generated over 80 donations, with a number of pledges still coming in. Instruments donated include guitars, ukuleles, drum kits, violins, flutes and even rare instruments such as harps.

There has also been support from local distributors, including a donation of over £1,000 worth of musical instruments from both Normans Music and PMT.

With recognition that the cost of a musical instrument can be prohibitive for many families and could stand in the way of a young musician realising their potential, The Instrumental Change aims to improve access to music and remove barriers to study by providing an instrument to young people who otherwise would not be able to afford one. 

Alongside Junior LCoM, the region’s organisations who are set to benefit from the appeal will include ArtForms Leeds, Made with Music, Cloth Cat Studios, DJ School UK, Chapel FM and Tutti! Community Concert Band.

The appeal has also received support from Hobgoblin Music, and has been backed by some of the conservatoire’s alumni including Jon Gomm, Ruby Wood (Submotion Orchestra), Richard Gartland (Bang Bang Romeo), Johnny Thirkell (trumpet with Jamiroquai, Level 42 and Lisa Stansfield) and Michael Spearman of Everything Everything.

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LCoM is still gladly receiving donations of unwanted instruments over the next few weeks, and if you have an unwanted instrument in good working order that you would like to donate to the campaign, please contact The Instrumental Change campaign lead Dav Williams on

Joe Wilson, Vice Principal & Director of Curriculum at LCoM said; “We are delighted with the fantastic level of support that this campaign has received from the public – giving opportunities to many young musicians who otherwise would not have been able to afford an instrument. We thank each and every person who has donated generously to The Instrumental Change – and we look forward to seeing young people across the region develop their musical talent as a result.”

Karen Gourlay, Head of Junior LCoM said; I am delighted with the success of The Instrumental Change Campaign. One of the biggest barriers to becoming a musician is access to a suitable instrument and through this scheme we will be able to support young people on their musical journey. Hearing the stories of people donating instruments and how they wanted to encourage young people to become involved in music was heartwarming.

Find out more about The Instrumental Change campaign

Find our more about Junior LCoM

By Kath Hartley

It'll be fantastic to seeing our @LeedsDrama studios come alive again.
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