In April this year 30 primary school children from Marriott Primary School on the Saffron Lane estate, Leicester went to the National Youth Brass Band Championships of Great Britain in Warwick. Against the odds and with just a few months preparation they came home with the award for Band Showing Most Potential. Quite an achievement, but it is only the start! This project is about pride, identity and the power of music to transform lives. A local action group has set itself the challenge to
a. Make the band a community asset;
b. Embed brass in the community;
c. Raise the standard of playing through peer to peer learning and leadership and d. celebrate diversity.
Its organisers Drum and Brass CIC are aiming to raise £7,004 via a crowdfunding campaign to help buy the children from Marriott Primary School new instruments and uniforms to give their band, ‘The Brass of the Saff’ a boost, to help the project grow and attract new members into the band.
The cash will buy 60 new instruments and uniforms, increase the number of awards and opportunities available through the project, and help produce a CD of the band’s music in 2019.
The band – which practises at Marriot Primary School – has already seen its crowdfund appeal attract 90+ backers who have pledged over £5,000 in support so far! Saffron councillors have also offered their backing with an award of £2,250 from the ward community fund.
Ward Councillor, Elly Cutkelvin said: “This is a really exciting way to attract funding for local projects in our wards, and a great way for community to feel involved. The opportunity this particular group provides for local kids is brilliant – a fun chance to learn an instrument and develop new skills".
She continued, “We’ve heard them play and they sound fantastic!”
Cllr Bill Shelton added: “As Councillors for the Saffron ward, we are only too pleased to help this project bring the joy and satisfaction of learning to play music to even more local children. Good luck to them in their endeavours.”
Julie Maxwell, Project Manager at Drum and Bass CIC, said: “The support for The Brass of the Saff appeal has been fantastic and we’re really grateful to have received so many generous pledges. We’ve already had a brilliant experience at the National Youth Brass Band Championships in April and we want to build on that and make the youth brass band a permanent fixture in the community. It’s such a great channel for the considerable talent in the area that might otherwise go unnoticed.”
Leicester City Council last year teamed up with crowd-funding organisation Spacehive to launch CrowdFund Leicester.
To pledge support for ‘The Brass of the Saff’ appeal – which is due to run until 30 November – visit www.spacehive.com/the-brass-of-the-saff