Hull 2017 legacy project gives pupils something to sing about

A project launched during Hull City of Culture 2017 has been able to continue thanks to funding from Newground Together, NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

Building on the success of the project that was debuted as part of Hull 2017’s Creative Communities Programme, Song for Hull will return to the city, even bigger than before.

The project, which will be managed by Hull Music Service, will see children from 12 primary schools and one high school across the city work with professionals to write and record a song before performing it live at a concert in front of an audience at Bonus Arena on 7 February 2020.

Based on poems from the children around the theme When I Grow Up – Building Aspiration, the song will be written by professional writer Nigel Taylor from Beats Bus, a social enterprise designed to encourage the city’s next generation to speak out about their hopes and aspirations through music.

Founder of Song for Hull Martin Gore said: “Song for Hull creates a fantastic concert experience for the children, and raises their horizons as regards their future careers. At Hull University Teaching Hospitals, we are keen to showcase over 300 job roles we have in our hospitals and are committed to train in Hull for Hull as part of our wider health community partnerships.”

In addition to the opportunity to perform in an ensemble in a large scale and high-quality music production and working with professional musicians and venue, it is hoped the project will raise the aspiration of the young people involved as well as boosting their mental health.

Dr Dan Roper, NHS Hull CCG Chair said: “It is incredibly important to us that we work with a wide variety of people across the city to help support the health and wellbeing of children and young people as well as help raise their aspirations.

“We know that singing has multiple health benefits, improving breathing and posture plus mental wellbeing too. Singing brings people together, helps people to bond and friendships to form. All adding up to increased confidence and healthier, happier lives.

“We’re really excited to see the final performance, and hearing the Song for Hull, and we’re looking forward to meeting the children during rehearsals too when we will spend time with them to talk to them about how they could be a part of the NHS.

“I’m sure there will be some future health care professionals amongst them who we can help inspire to continue creating a healthier Hull.” 

Peter Jordan is the Director of Newground Together, which is the charitable arm of Together Housing Group. He said: “Together Housing Group has strong connections in Hull with over 650 homes in the city. We operate in many areas of Hull including the Ings estate, where we are building over 350 new homes as part of a partnership with Compendium Living and Hull City Council. Building on this connection, we invited all Ings schools to take part in the project, as well as schools in other parts of the city.

“The Trustees of the Newground Together charity were pleased to co-fund this proposal as it brought together agencies throughout Hull in a worthwhile project helping young people to think about their futures with hope.”

James Dickinson, Head of Hull Music Service, said: “In our role as Lead Partner for Hull Music Hub, we are working with an increasingly broad range of partners and Song for Hull is an excellent example of this. We are delighted to be managing this project and are looking forward to its culmination at the Bonus Arena in February. This is a project that certainly lives up to our commitment to “putting music at the heart of Hull.” 

Tickets cost £5 and are available from www.justbookitnow.com/event/song-for-hull-2020 

[Alix Johnson – Together Housing Group]