Council Debate 10 July 2018

Jane Humberstone spoke on behalf of the petitioners at the full council meeting on 10 July.  She implored the council to take into consideration the £202k of savings already made.  Cllr Standley’s correction to the petition detailed that the savings required are £180K.  It would seem ridiculous to enforce the redundancies of 70 teachers and deny 3000 children tuition on this basis.

However, a motion to welcome the steps already taken to create a realistic, sustainable future for the instrumental service was passed.  Nevertheless, we are still unclear whether this is still a move to separate the instrumental service from the other services provided by the music hub – ensembles, and whole class opportunities.

As Cllr John Barnes said, the private market will not cope.  Ensembles and school services will crumble without instrumental tuition.

Cllr Godfrey Daniels also mentioned that the discontinuation of the Music Management Committee in 2017 could be seen to have been a pre-emptive strike.  This committee of elected councillors had important stewardship and oversight of the running of the service and its charitable trust – the East Sussex Music Trust.  Members of the committee have been surprised to learn that the committee no longer exists and that the sole trustee is now Stuart Gallimore, Head of Children’s Services.

Clarity is being saught.

You can read Jane’s address to the council here: and watch the webcast of the council meeting here:


Renowned opera star Allan Clayton joins the campaign at Lewes Ouse Day

On 1 July in Lewes, Allan Clayton, one of the most exciting tenors on the opera scene will be supporting our cause.

At 1:30pm hear Allan join the Wellington Wailers sing Sea Shanties as they parade through the town.

At 2:00pm at Malling Rec he’ll be joining our rag-tag band of musicians in choruses of Sussex by the Sea to protest against cuts in public funding.

Races begin at 2:15 with the crazy raft race starting at 3:00pm.

Programmes are on sale now and each sale will donate funds to our sister charity Martlets Music who give bursaries to enable children to access instrumental lessons.  Each programme has a unique number for the chance to win £1000.  Contact us for details

The consultation begins

The ‘public’ consultation has begun.  You may wish to head over to our Facebook page to read the comments before you answer.

We have also put together some questions that we have gathered from different groups which may be of interest.

Although we cannot influence your views, we would like to emphasise that this group is committed to keeping the instrumental service together with all of the other services the council wishes to retain.

In the meantime, please continue to encourage people to sign the petition and continue to ask councillors, MPs and anyone of influence to support us

BBC Sunday Politics 27 May 2018

Pre-recorded filming with Sir John Tomlinson and Heathfield Community College.  In the studio were Lloyd Russell-Moyle, MP for Brighton Kemptown, Tom Tugendhat, MP for Tonbridge and Malling and Councillor Bob Standley from ESCC.

Watch from 11:51 to hear cross-party support from the MPs but a lack of commitment to finding workable solutions from Cllr Standley.  For more information, read our useful info page

BBC Sunday Politics

May Day brings wide support

Supporters gathered on Monday & May in Eastbourne to lead the annual march organised by the Eastbourne Trades Council.  As well as support from the many unions it was good to see the town’s MP Stephen Lloyd there in support.  He has written to constituents and on his Facebook page in support.