East Sussex Music (Instrumental Teaching) Consultation

Closed 27 Jul 2018

Opened 6 Jun 2018


How to take part in this consultation  

The consultation runs for 8 weeks, from 6 June to 27 July 2018. We would like to hear from you whether or not you currently use East Sussex Music. We will do all we can to make it as easy as possible for everyone to have their say. Please note that there is a separate survey for children and young people which can be accessed here: https://consultation.eastsussex.gov.uk/childrens-services/eastsussexmusicyoungp/

There are a number of ways you can give your views:

  • By completing the questionnaire online
  • By printing a copy of the questionnaire from our website and returning it to us
  • By contacting us to request a paper copy of the questionnaire using the details below.

Completed surveys can be posted back to us at: Equality and Participation Team, County Hall, St Anne’s Crescent, Lewes, BN7 1UE.

If you have a question about this consultation, need help to take part or need a copy of the information in a different format or another language, please contact us by e-mail at equalityandparticipation@eastsussex.gov.uk or by phone on 01273 335250.

Why are we making a proposal to close the small group and individual instrumental teaching part of East Sussex Music?

The Arts Council England grant and income we receive from schools and from parents who pay lesson fees does not cover the whole cost of the delivery of instrumental teaching by East Sussex Music.  A saving of £180k is needed to ensure East Sussex Music is financially sustainable.  While a number of savings have been identified, it has not yet been possible to identify an alternative delivery model for instrumental teaching which would deliver all of the required savings and would meet the Arts Council requirements (a condition of the grant). East Sussex Music is not a statutory service and because of cuts to public funding, local authorities find themselves in a position where difficult decisions are being made about cutting much valued services.

£10m cuts are also proposed for Adult Social Care, seven libraries and the Mobile Library have closed, £400k has been cut from the budget for grass cutting and Early Help services for vulnerable families are being reviewed with an expectation of £2.6m savings being delivered. The Director of Children's Services has made it clear that he does not think it is right to identify additional funding for East Sussex Music by cutting other statutory services. Please see the related documents at the bottom of this page for more information on statutory children's services and the Lead Member report.

What will happen if the instrumental teaching part of the Music service closes?

Working with our partners as part of the East Sussex Music Education Hub, we want to ensure children and young people from a variety of backgrounds are able to enrich their lives through having  access to affordable opportunities to learn a musical instrument and to come together to make music.

3136 children are currently learning a musical instrument through group or individual lessons with East Sussex Music. If this part of the service closes lessons would be available through the private market or through other organisations. Many children in East Sussex already access instrumental lessons in this way.

East Sussex Music would still run Area Music Centres, summer schools and special projects, providing opportunities for young musicians to play together.  Please see the related documents at the bottom of this page to see a fuller list of what East Sussex Music would continue to deliver.


Why your views matter

This survey asks for your views about the proposal to close the small group and individual instrumental teaching part of East Sussex Music after September 2019. Your views will help us to understand the potential impact and identify what we could do to address your concerns. We regret and acknowledge that if this part of the music service closes, there may be some negative impact on music opportunities for some young people who learn to play an instrument via East Sussex Music and therefore we are interested in exploring alternative options to closure and would like to hear of any alternative proposals you might have. 

There is a separate survey from young people.

Other services that East Sussex Music provides, such as whole class instrumental tuition in schools, orchestras, bands and choirs at Area Music Centres and summer schools and the East Sussex Academy of Music are not included in this consultation as these services will continue.

We want to reassure you that if the proposal goes ahead, we will provide information about what instrumental teaching would continue to be available from other providers in East Sussex. 

We will be able to report on a final decision about the proposal in September 2018.



  • All Areas


  • Residents of East Sussex
  • Children
  • People who use our services


  • Children and young people