Thank you for the music

Release Date: 24-Jun-2015
Budding musicians of all ages came together yesterday (23 June) to showcase their new talents.
Young and old alike have loved learning to play the uke

Young and old alike have loved learning to play the uke

A ukulele extravaganza featured musicians from two retirement living schemes, children from St Thomas School in Huddersfield and Holmfirth High, as well as residents from the wider community.

The concert was organised to celebrate the success of an intergenerational music project run by KNH, Kirklees Music School (KMS), St Thomas School and more recently Local Services 2 You, a community support service based in Bradley. This was the third such event, which celebrated not only the new skills learned, but also the great friendships that have been formed between the two generations.

Around 30 older people are involved with the project, which began April 2013. The retirement schemes involved are Brooklands in Bradley, and Belmont Grange in Norrishthorpe.

For Rodney Coats from the Brooklands ukulele group, “Getting together with the young people really helps bridge the generation gap. It’s great to share the same interests with different age groups.”

Ten year old Jessica from St Thomas School agrees: “I’ve really liked building friendships, sharing skills and preforming together each week,” she said.

According to Ginette Eady, who teaches the lessons, it’s no surprise that the instrument is so popular with young and old alike: "The ukulele is brilliant for anyone to learn. It really comes to life when played in groups and is a good way into any form of music,” says Ginette.

"The project has enabled people who haven't had a chance to enjoy a musical activity to have the opportunity to experience performing together, and for some of them, this is the realization of a life-long ambition to learn an instrument.

“Everyone has been so motivated and really engaged with the instrument, the music and the experience of getting to know each other. It’s lovely to see the groups working together and getting on so well; everyone is valued and the benefits are obvious when you see them perform

Karina Sykes is KNH's older people’s activities coordinator. She said: “I’ve been delighted with the success of the project. Everyone’s had a great time while learning a new skill.

“It’s also wonderful to see the two generations forming bonds over a common interest – the combination of learning and socializing is really helping our older residents live life to the full.”

• If you’d like more information about the lessons, you can contact KNH on 01484 416444 or email