THEY had big ideas to boost music in a newly-refurbished building, but sadly the economic downturn has hit them hard.
Kirklees Music School has no option but to sell their building at Northumberland Street after a £1m refurbishment fund was withdrawn.
Thom Meredith, principal of the music school, said he understood that in the financial climate the money could not be spared, but said it was disappointing nevertheless.
He said staff, parents and pupils had big ideas for the place, but they now have to re-think their plans.
They continue to work from their rented offices at Beast Market, but must sell the Northumberland base.
Thom, a renowned singer and conducted of Colne Valley Male Voice Choir and the newly formed Boys’ Choir, said: “There were plans at one stage for the council to put £1m into refurbishing that building.
“We have owned it for three years and were waiting for that to happen but unfortunately with the economic climate the council hasn’t got any money to deliver the project like that.
“It’s understandable, but it means we’re having to sell it.”
The music school was formed in 1992 to secure continuing instrumental tuition. It is an independent charitable trust and company limited by guarantee.
Music ranges from world music, rock and DJ mixing, as well as curriculum support to schools, recitals and work in the pre-school and special need areas.
The school has supported thousands of young musicians over the years both in and out of school.
Thom added: “It would have been wonderful to have the building fitted out for us.
“We had all sorts of plans and ideas for it. We had the idea to have a Gamelan orchestra, but due to the times we are in we’ve got to accept that it isn’t going to happen.
“It wasn’t suitable for us to bring children into it as it was – it did need some work.”
The music school has been working from Moldgreen Primary School, which Thom said had been wonderful in accommodating them.
“It’s a great shame and it’s something I think a lot of staff, parents and pupils are disappointed about as they were looking forward to having that building, but that’s the situation at the moment.”
A spokeswoman for Kirklees Council said: “The council and the Kirklees Music School have been working closely together for some time in order to explore opportunities to support the relocation of KMS through Schools for the Future to secure its future in the long-term as an integral part of music provision in Kirklees.
“This work will continue.”