Sherborne Abbey Festival is an event that is volunteer organised and run and one which gives back to the community and its audiences.

Proceeds from ticket sales are reinvested, to ensure financial security for future festivals and to support local music initiatives, especially those involving young people. See below to see the grants the Festival has made in recent years.

Applications for a grant can be made either for a group or an individual. For children under 18, the application must be made by an adult on their behalf. Further information and application forms can be found below.

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Since its inception, the Festival has raised more than £300,000 for charitable causes, scholarships and support of the music at Sherborne Abbey, including:

  • Financial support of the Abbey Choristers.
  • Grant to Sherborne Abbey Choir to support individual singing lessons and tuition for the choristers.
  • Purchase of a laptop for a chorister to join in with online rehearsals during lockdown.
  • Grant to Sherborne Young Musicians Competition 2016 and 2018.
  • Provision of cushioned kneelers for Sherborne Abbey Choir (improving comfort for concert-goers throughout the year).
  • Support of Sherborne Literary Festival (for recitals at Sherborne Abbey Primary School).
  • Grant for choral workshops at Sherborne Abbey Primary School.
  • Grant to English Tenor Kieran White towards his music studies at the Royal Academy.
  • Music grant to William Ellis towards his music studies at Oxford University.
  • Music grant to Baritone Benjamin Hewat-Craw to study Lieder in Germany.
  • Music grant to Flautist Rosie Bowker for help to purchase a new flute and head joint.
  • Maintenance support of Sherborne Abbey’s organ.
  • Grant for a camera for Cheap Street Church – to provide on screen view for events and concerts
  • Purchase of a new upright piano for Sherborne Abbey Choir vestry
  • Provision of cushioned seating throughout Sherborne Abbey pews

Applying for a Grant

We will consider applications for grants for individuals (aged up to 30 years), schools within the Benefice, or groups which involve young people and have Sherborne connections. Previous recipients may re-apply but there is no guarantee of a grant being awarded on a continuing annual basis.

Every application will be considered on its own merits, according to the following criteria:

  • Without exception the grant must be used to promote or support music within the Benefice of Sherborne or the grant should further the development of young musicians who have lived in, studied in or have connections with Sherborne.
  • The grant must not be used to fund a salary, or pay for day to day living expenses of a music student.

Examples for which a grant may be considered (though this is not exhaustive) are:

  • Towards the purchase of a musical instrument or repair of an instrument.
  • Purchase of books or music for instrumental studies.
  • Support towards the cost of music related workshops in schools.
  • Towards cost of travel and accommodation for auditions, workshops. masterclasses, courses and interviews.
  • Towards the cost of professional photographs for publicity and biographies.
  • Towards the purchase of concert dress.