Leeds Conservatoire secures continued support from the Leverhulme Trust

By Dav Williams


Leeds Conservatoire is delighted to announce that it has received continued funding from the Leverhulme Trust, which will support undergraduate students and the families of young musicians who attend Leeds Junior Conservatoire.

This funding closely aligns with our commitment to widen access to conservatoire-level training, and will enable the provision of scholarships and bursaries across a range of programmes between September 2022 and August 2025.

Leverhulme Arts Scholarships will support students on our BA (Hons) Music (Folk), BA (Hons) Music (Songwriting) and BA (Hons) Music (Jazz) undergraduate degree programmes, encouraging talented musicians to apply to the conservatoire, irrespective of socio-economic background. Leverhulme Bursaries for Young Musicians will assist a number of families who attend Leeds Junior Conservatoire.

Jazz ensemble performing live

Jazz students performing live. 


Our jazz degree was the first in Europe and over the last six decades, we’ve become a leading authority and centre for excellence in jazz across the UK and in Europe.

Successful alumni from the programme include notable names such as Nikki Iles, Alan Barnes, David Newton, Pete Wareham, Matthew Bourne, Jamil Sheriff, Chris Sharkey, Snake Davis, Roller Trio, Phil Meadows, Matt Roberts and Ashley Henry.

9 musicians on our Jazz degree programme will benefit over the duration of the grant. Scholarships of £4,000 will be awarded on the basis of excellence, assessed at audition.

Graduate Fund Image (13)


Our Songwriting degree prepares our students for a successful career in the modern music industry. Students are taught by staff who are specialists within their field and include songwriters/composers, performers, entrepreneurs and academics who work professionally in the industry.

We are often visited by representatives from record labels and publishing companies, including Polydor, Decca and Kobalt, who want to observe what our students are doing.

9 musicians on our Songwriting degree programme will benefit over the duration of the grant. Scholarships of £3,000 will be awarded on the basis of excellence and financial need, assessed as part of the application process.

Folk Students 3

Graduates of our Folk degree programme.


Our inclusive approach to folk and traditional music explores music, stories and traditions from all over the world. Students explore traditional music from the British Isles and globally, expanding it through innovative performance, composition, arrangement and recording techniques. We encourage our students to develop their own artistry and distinctive voice by creating new and unique ways of storytelling.

Our Folk degree has already seen some incredible graduate success stories. Maddie Morris was a recipient of the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award 2019. Elsewhere, Iona Lane participated in Music:Leeds Launchpad artist development programme, received funding via Help Musicians Do It Differently Fund to produce her debut album and was awarded the Taran Guitars Young Players Bursary 2020.

18 young musicians from our Folk degree programme will benefit over the duration of the grant. Scholarships of £2,000 will be awarded on the basis of excellence, assessed at audition.

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Leeds Junior Conservatoire

Programmes such as Leeds Junior Conservatoire which seek to widen access and tackle inequality are fundamental in ensuring that some of region’s most talented young people have access to music education in future.

Bursaries for Young Musicians will cover the full tuition costs of our LJC+ programme, which takes place on Saturday mornings, alongside provision of first and second study 1:1 lessons. At least 9 families will benefit each academic year.

Awards will be made in light of financial need and potential (identified via an application form and audition day).

Professor Joe Wilson, Principal of Leeds Conservatoire outlined:

“We are delighted to have received such a generous grant from Leverhulme Trust, which will provide life-changing financial support for many talented musicians.

Leeds Conservatoire prides itself on being accessible to all and is deeply committed to ensuring equal opportunities irrespective of financial background.

It is thanks to support from funding such as the Leverhulme grant that Leeds Conservatoire can enable some of the most gifted students and young musicians to fulfil their potential.”

About the Leverhulme Trust

The Leverhulme Trust was established in 1925 following the death of Lord Leverhulme, who left instruction for his estate to be used to support ‘scholarships for… research and education’.

The Leverhulme Arts Scholarships are awarded to specialist institutions or registered charities to provide training opportunities across the fine and performing arts: music, drama, dance, film, fine art etc.

Find out more about our undergraduate scholarships and bursaries at Leeds Conservatoire

Find out more about the range of financial support available for those at Leeds Junior Conservatoire

Learn more about the Leverhulme Trust

By Dav Williams

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