Success for campaigners as Bristol music collection stays in the city

Bristol’s collection of over 1,200 music sets and scores will stay in the city after an agreement was reached between Bristol Music Trust and Bristol’s Library Service.

The news comes following original plans to transfer the sets to other libraries outside the city.

Councillor Asher Craig, Deputy Mayor with responsibility for libraries, said:

“We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Bristol Music Trust (BMT) to keep these valuable assets in Bristol. As the library service seeks to make changes under the current budget pressures, we are no longer able to offer access to the music sets or the inter-lending service to music groups. However, we listened to campaigners who were clear that they wanted to see these sets stay in Bristol, and we are grateful to BMT for working with us to allow them to remain accessible to music groups.”

Phil Castang, Director of Creative Learning and Engagement at BMT said:

“As an organisation dedicated to making music accessible to everyone, it seemed wholly appropriate to work with Bristol City Council to secure the future of this popular collection and be able to continue public access. We’re hoping to involve the public to help us sort the collection before we move it to our Bristol Plays Music hub in Southmead. It will then be available to music groups to borrow.” 

Barbara Eifler, Chief Executive of Making Music, who led the campaign to keep the music sets available for public loan, said:

“We are delighted that the Bristol music sets will be made available to community music groups by Bristol Plays Music. Undoubtedly users will be keen to support the transition in practical ways. These resources are of great value to volunteer-led unfunded choirs, orchestras and bands which have such a significant impact on the individuals who take part and the communities they operate in. Affordable and local material to support their music-making is essential to their sustainability. Making Music is very pleased that Bristol Plays Music is so supportive of life-long music participation.”

Find out more about Bristol Plays Music