BBC Proms 2020 season collection arrangements

A pyramid of yellow buckets with Promenaders' Musical charities labels with a back drop of the auditorium of the Royal Albert Hall

Friday 17 July is the start of the 2020 season of the Sir Henry Wood Promenade Concerts, in association with the BBC, although in a rather different form to normal years. With social distancing restrictions in place, and the expectation that there will be no audience in the hall even for the live elements of the season, we are organising an online-only collection this year. The trustees have decided to concentrate on our two core charities, Help Musicians (Registered charity No. 228089), and CLIC Sargent (Registered charity No. 1107328).

We have created pages on JustGiving to allow you to make online donations to these charities via Promenaders’ Musical Charities, follow this link for Help Musicians and this link for CLIC Sargent. If you would rather send a cheque (or CAF cheque), see the details on our 2020 season page.

With Help Musicians we will be supporting their COVID-19 Hardship Fund. Musicians get most of their work on a freelance basis, which has almost entirely dried up. Many have found that they do not qualify for the government support schemes, so have had to apply for Universal Credit or other benefits which may still leave them in considerable financial difficulties.

With CLIC Sargent we will continue to fund their music therapy work with children and young people with cancer (and their families). Life with cancer is hard enough in normal times, but of course there are inevitably many more worries at the moment, and this is vital support to help those receiving treatment for cancer. Unfortunately this work had to be suspended in the early part of the pandemic, but these donations will help remobilise the service, potentially moving to an online service, depending on what restrictions remain in place within hospitals.

We will continue to provide regular updates on the progress of our collection on this site, and via our Twitter account and Facebook page.

2019 collection total and distribution

Following the recent Trustees’ meeting we are delighted to announce that the toal amount donated this year was a record breaking £121,842.95. The collection has been distributed as follows:

Help Musicians UK £43,990
CLIC Sargent £34,880
Richard House Children’s Hospice £17,405
London Music Fund £12,580
National Orchestra for All £12,580

We couldn’t have collected this magnificent total without the generosity of the Proms audiences or the hard work of our collectors, so thank you to everyone who played their part.

Please note that if you would like to make an application for support from the collections to be made at the 2020 season of the Sir Henry Wood Promenade Concerts, we have recently added a more detailed Guidance page.

The last night approaches

A pyramid of yellow buckets with Promenaders' Musical charities labels with a back drop of the auditorium of the Royal Albert Hall

Once again the end of the season rolls round. A rather unusual season this year of course. This does seem to have affected the amount we’ve been able to collect, although there is still time, and we will leave the collection pages open for a week or so after the end of the season.

Today our chairman, Lee McLernon, delivered the laurel chaplet to the Royal Albert Hall so that at least that will be in place as normal on the bust of Sir Henry Wood on the Last Night. Of course, the normal ceremony of it being placed by a pair of Promenaders will not take place. You can also hear Lee on today’s BBC Radio 4 TheWorld at One in conversation with violinist Tasmin Little, discussing the importance of live music, and its audience. The segment begins around 38 minutes into the show, which can be found on BBC Sounds.

So far a total of £3,910 has been donated: £1,095 for CLIC Sargent and £2,815 for Help Musicians. To make a donation, please visit our Just Giving pages, for CLIC Sargent (supporting their music therapy work with children and young people with cancer) and for Help Musicians (supporting their COVID-19 hardship fund). For other donation methods, see our 2020 Season page.