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RWCMD Petition Hits 10,000 Signatures and is Discussed at Senedd Petitions Committee

More leading figures from music and the arts sign the Union’s open letter in support of Young RWCMD, as the Senedd Petitions Committee call for urgent action to protect the programme.

Published: 04 July 2024 | 4:50 PM Updated: 08 July 2024 | 2:45 PM
Exterior white sign on grey slate with logo saying Senedd Cymru and Welsh Parliament.
The Senedd Petitions Committee will be writing to the Finance Committee ahead of a debate on budget priorities. Image credit: Shutterstock.

Over 10,000 people have signed a Senedd Petition in support of the Young RWCMD programme at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (RWCMD).

As a result of hitting this benchmark, the petition - started by MU members and teachers affected by the proposals – was discussed by the Senedd Petitions Committee on Monday 24 June 2024.

A budget priority

The Senedd Petitions Committee (Y Pwyllgor Deisebau) confirmed it will be writing to the Finance Committee (Y Pwyllgor Cyllid) ahead of a debate on budget priorities.

Chair of the Petitions Committee Rhianon Passmore MS also stated that the committee would be writing to the Education, Economy and Culture Ministers, “to highlight this position and the urgency of this need.”

Speaking on the issue, committee members highlighted the need for an economic impact assessment and a debate to ensure that any decisions taken are sustainable long term, with a particular focus on the impact on the music industry and access for young people in Wales.

Backed by leading figures from music and the arts

Last month, leading figures in the music and arts industries signed an open letter in support of the Young RWCMD programme published by the Musicians’ Union.

Signatories included: Michael Fitzhardinge Berkeley, Joanna Clare MacGregor CBE, Mark Wigglesworth, Charlotte Page, Suhayla El-Bushra, Richard Baker, Steven Isserlis CBE, Murray McLachlan, Maimuna Enya Memon, Alistair McGowan and Cathy Newman.

Since then, more names have added their voice to the call including:

  • Ryan Bancroft, Conductor (London)
  • Sarah-Jane Dale, Chair of the MU’s Live Performance Committee (Reigate)
  • Ben Davies, Cellist and teacher (London)
  • Rachel Podger, AGSMD, FGSMD, Hon RAM, Hon RWCMD, RWCMD Jane Hodge Chair for Baroque Violin, RAM Micaela Comberti Chair for Baroque Violin
  • Nick Stringfellow, Associate Head of Strings, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire (Birmingham)

Read the open letter and full list of signatories.

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