Campaign hits the right note with academy

Blackpool Music Academy on Waterloo Road in Blackpool has received over 50 musical instruments in The Gazette's Give Us A Tune Appeal.'Pictured are John Shaw Chairman, David Cameron, Aimee Lee (9), Kerry Strangwick (12) CORRECT, Genevieve Heap-Shaw (10) and Chris Penny Director.'14th August 2015
Blackpool Music Academy on Waterloo Road in Blackpool has received over 50 musical instruments in The Gazette's Give Us A Tune Appeal.'Pictured are John Shaw Chairman, David Cameron, Aimee Lee (9), Kerry Strangwick (12) CORRECT, Genevieve Heap-Shaw (10) and Chris Penny Director.'14th August 2015
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Students, teachers and owners at a Fylde coast music academy are celebrating after a Gazette-led campaign hit its first target.

Give Us A Tune was launched in April with the aim of leaving a lasting musical legacy in the resort.

The Gazette wanted readers to donate instruments and cash to Blackpool Music Academy, in Waterloo Road, to make learning music more accessible.

And this week the 50th instrument – a violin – was given to John Shaw, music academy owner.

It is hoped the academy will act as a music library, giving people the chance to hire and try instruments before buying.

Mr Shaw said he had been overwhelmed by the response to the campaign; violins, guitars, keyboards and a trumpet among instruments donated by readers.

He said: “I must thank The Gazette and everyone who has donated to us.

“It will help the academy to give the community an opportunity they would not be able to have because of the cost of musical instruments.

“I have been trying to do something like this for close to a decade.

“One lady donated a guitar worth £800 – all told we think we have between £3,000 to £4,000-worth of instruments.”

Founded by Mr Shaw in 2006, the academy was created with the aim of making music accessible to people from all walks of life.

Classes at the centre cover a range of instruments from the keyboard to the ukulele and no experience is necessary.

Chris Penny, music academy director added: “We want students to come in and try instruments.

“They can give one a go, rather than spending £300 or £400 and finding it is something they do not enjoy.

“It will be great for kids to come and sample it.”

Give Us A Tune – the bid to leave a lasting musical legacy in the resort

The Gazette’s Give Us A Tune campaign has already won the backing of famous names including DJ Danny Howard, musical star Jodie Prenger and singer Little Boots.

In June Blackpool-born Pet Shop Boys member Chris Lowe donated a keyboard.

After reaching the first target of 50 instruments, the academy hopes to raise £20,000 to subsidise lessons for future Fylde coast music stars.

To continue to support our Give Us A Tune campaign, you can drop instruments off at the Academy on Waterloo Road, Blackpool. The academy can collect items from homes if required.

To donate money to the academy, visit www.blackpoolmusicacademy.com. For more information, contact (01253) 695398.