21st September 2023

Harmony Works Trust – the new collaborative powerhouse organised by Sheffield Music Hub, Sheffield Music Academy, Brass Bands England, and Music in the Round – is celebrating this week, after being officially recognised as a charity by the UK Charity Com

Harmony Works Trust plans to base itself at Canada House, a 35,000 sq. ft Grade II* listed building in the soon-to-be regenerated Castlegate area.

Organisers are underway with a £13m project to restore and revitalise the grand building, while creating a stunning new home for music education in the city. It received Planning and Listed Building consent in 2022.

For Harmony Works Trust, the new status means it will be able to apply for funding directly and do even more to transform the lives of young people in the city.

It will ensure that musical education is for all, whilst at the same time breathing new life into the Grade II* listed historic gem.

Harmony Works will house the leading music education organisations in Sheffield and provide music education for more than 50,000 young people. This will advance not only education but promote public appreciation of the performing arts, supporting the wellbeing of all who engage with it.

Its city-centre location, at the corner of Castlegate and close to Ponds Forge, will mean that the very best music education is accessible for all young people.

Recording, performance, and practice spaces will support all types of musical development.

Harmony Works is set to be a vibrant and welcoming space with a café open to all, along with chill-out spaces that young people can make their own.

The team is working towards a major National Lottery Heritage Fund delivery grant application which, it is hoped, will deliver £4m of capital funding.

Emily Pieters, Harmony Works’ Project Director said: 

“We are incredibly happy to have been accepted for charitable status – it reinforces everything that we have been working on to date and encourages us as we approach vital milestones for the project over the next few months.

“Sheffield boasts a strong musical heritage, with some of the world’s best-known bands and artists, and a long history of live music venues and music festivals. We want all young people in the region to have access to state-of-the-art facilities that can empower them to be part of this rich legacy and that is what the Harmony Works project is about.

“With our submission for the National Lottery Heritage Fund delivery grant application ever nearer, we can’t wait to be one step closer to bringing everything together within Canada House, seeing it transform, creating one central hub to engage with wider audiences, and ensuring that music education in Sheffield is diverse, accessible and fun for all.”

Trisha Cooper, Chair of Sheffield Music Academy, added: 

“Securing official charity status is a hugely significant moment for the Harmony Works project. It has been a key ambition of our collaboration since day one and we are confident that it will help us achieve our long-term aspirations for creating a world class music facility in the heart of South Yorkshire ensuring that music education in Sheffield is diverse, accessible, inclusive and fun for all.” 

At its helm, Harmony Works’ trustees are Karen Burland, Denise Edwards, Ian Falconer, David Hobson, Peter Kennan, and Keith Shivers.

David Hobson, Trustee for Harmony Works, said: 

This important milestone is further evidence of the momentum that Harmony Works is building with partners across the city and wider region, like that of the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District and the Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park. 

“Harmony Works is just more evidence of Sheffield being home to some truly transformational projects that will make a difference to not only the economy in our region but to the lives of many across the city.”

Professor Karen Burland, Trustee for Harmony Works and the Chair of Sheffield Music Hub, said

This is such an exciting step in our mission to share the joy of musical learning with young people across the city.

“Musical participation brings people together, helps young people to discover who they are and where they fit in the world, and offers so much personal fulfilment and joy – to creators and audiences alike.

“Harmony Works Trust brings us closer to placing music education at the heart of the city, where it can be accessed and enjoyed by people from all over the city, and embedded in the cultural life of Sheffield.”

For more information on Harmony Works, please visitwww.harmonyworks.org.uk/support/

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