National Survey calls on disabled community to share experiences of access to music services

National Survey calls on disabled community to share experiences of access to music services


I work for Creative United on the Take it away scheme, which offers interest-free loans for musical instruments, equipment, software and tuition, funded by Arts Council England and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. We are currently working in partnership with OHMI, Drake Music, Open Up Music and Youth Music on a big consortium initiative to address the barriers to music making faced by disabled people. I notice that UKDHM this year is focussing on Music and Disability so there is obvious crossover here.

Part of the work we’re doing includes a major research project aiming to capture a detailed picture of the experiences of disabled people (and disabled children in particular) regarding music making. Recent statistics published by the Musician’s Union show that increasingly children in state schools and particularly those from low income families are unable to access the opportunities available to their more affluent peers, and while we know anecdotally that this includes a large number of disabled young people, there are no national data sets available that describe the experiences and particular barriers faced by disabled children and young people with regard to participation in music.

We want to gather a robust set of evidence that will enable us to lobby for meaningful change and to direct resources where parents and children tell us they are most needed. To this end, we have launched a survey inviting music makers (and their parents and carers) to tell us about their experiences; we want to hear from those with first hand experience of this issue what the barriers to music making opportunities might be, and what needs to be done to remove these and ensure accessible and inclusive opportunities exist for all.

Can you help us publicise the survey? I imagine the audiences engaging with UKDHM would have valuable insights they might like to share. A story on your website, mention in a newsletter, and/or social media comms would all be extremely helpful. We really want to ensure that everyone with something to say on this issue has the chance to have their voice heard.

Attached is our press release with further info, and below are links here to Facebook and Twitter posts about the surveys. We’ve added a prize draw incentive to give everyone who fills in the survey a chance to win £100.

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Please let me know if you have any questions or need images, and thanks so much in advance for any support you are able to give us.

Best wishes,


Holly McBride

Project Consultant, Take it away Scheme

**Please note, I work part time; my usual working day is Wednesday.**

P.S. Are you involved in making music, as a musician, educator or music retailer? Please help us shape the future of accessible music making. Tell us how it is, in our Access to Music Survey

Creative United

New Wing | Somerset House |Strand

London WC2R 1LA

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