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Benslow Music Fundraising Initiative

Updated: Jul 29, 2020

Benslow Music, just up the hill from us, are launching a big fundraising effort through August, currently focusing on three main initiatives:

1. Saturdays: Busking for Benslow

2. Sundays: Afternoon Tea with Palm Court Live Music

3. Thursdays: Early evening concert series

Saturdays: Busking for Benslow

A variety of great musicians: strings, wind, brass and singing, ranging from classical through to jazz

Running from 11am to 3pm each Saturday in August in Hitchin Market Square, which is also hosting al-fresco dining. Cash and card donations can be made, plus the opportunity to sign up to donate to Benslow monthly for six months.

Sundays: Afternoon Tea with Palm Court Live Music

Details are still being finalised but likely to be two sittings (3pm, 4.45pm) each Sunday in August (exc. 30th), held at Benslow Gardens. Tickets and price tbc but will need to be booked in advance

Thursdays: Early evening concert series

Showcasing the best professional performers

Expected to run 6.30-8.30pm (gardens open at 6pm) each Thursday in August. Also held in the stunning Benslow Gardens, bring a something to sit on (folding chair, rug, etc.); chilled prosecco and orange juice will be served to you. Tickets and price tbc but will need to be booked in advance

Many thanks for your support

Some more on the history of Benslow

Benslow is important to Hitchin. Its ideals trace back to back to the formation of the Rural Music Schools Association (RMSA) in 1929. Mary Ibberson was a Hitchin resident, a Quaker, and a renowned music teacher. ‘It all started when two young men in a small village wanted to play the violin’. Ibberson offered to teach them, and the first Rural Music School was born. At its heart was a passion for sharing the love of music with adults, young and old, regardless of education or demographics. In 1951 a lovely Victorian house was bequeathed to the RMSA by Esther Seebohm, another Quaker who shared Ibberson’s educational and musical beliefs. Seebohm’s will contained the proviso that her house should be used for ‘the making of music in perpetuity’. Seebohn’s house is the centre of the Benslow campus.

Benslow has continued to bring people together to share a love of music, to play and sing, and to listen. As one music-maker commented: ‘This is where happy and magical things happen’ . However, closure of Benslow during lockdown has had dire effects on its finances. To quote Peter Hewitt, Benslow CEO: ‘Our future is perilous….as things stand there is a severe risk that we will not survive beyond late autumn this year’

Provided by Catriona B

Benslow Music


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