Singing School of the Week! Part 1

Thu 11 March 2021

Here is a short video of our first ‘Singing School of the Week’ as part of the hubs ‘Sing Yourself Happy!’ project and weekly broadcasts. You can catch these live on our Facebook page every Wednesday at 2.30pm here

Our first school is the amazing Sitlington Netherton Junior & Infant School where music and singing permeates the whole week. Thank you to Deputy Headteacher and Music Leader, Andrea Rosamond and all of the pupils for their great contributions. Check out the video to see what singing means to the whole school!

If you would like your school to feature then please get in touch and we will let you have more details.

Virtual Music Centres & Ensembles

Fri 26 February 2021


At WMS we are continuing to adapt and find new innovative ways of working. While we are not able to run face to face ensembles at the moment due to COVD-19 restrictions and guidance, we took the opportunity to go digital and offer many of our much loved ensembles virtually. These have been successfully running now for several months and are always looking for new members. Please see details below for each Music Centre which you can also follow on Facebook.

Whilst we cannot fully replicate the live face to face ensemble experience, pupils are able to connect with their Music Centre friends, progress with their ensemble playing and try out more advanced groups if they feel ready and comfortable to do so. Music Centre sessions are delivered via Zoom and are currently free of charge.

If you are completely new to Music Centre activities and would like further details or how to get involved please get in touch with our Assistant Principal, Amanda Spalding

Manygates MC Facebook

Pontefract MC Facebook

Outwood MC Facebook

Minsthorpe MC Facebook

Horbury & Ossett MC Facebook




WMS & Lockdown – Important Update

Wed 6 January 2021

Wishing everybody the best in 2021. Just to confirm that after the governments announcements we can confirm that WMS will be moving all provision and tuition online as soon as possible to ensure the safety of everyone involved. The WMS Team and schools will be in touch shortly with more details of online lessons. Some people sadly missed these opportunities last summer so please ensure that we have your most up to date details by emailing

All groups and music centres will continue to run as Virtual Music Centres for this half term. A big thanks to everyone that has worked hard to make these a great experience and to our young musicians for attending!

Watch out for other updates such as our forthcoming lockdown weekly ‘Sing Yourself Happy’ and ‘FitBeat’ Classes! Don’t forget to subscribe to updates and news notification on this website.

Many thanks for your continued support.

Phil and the WMS Team

We’ll Make It Through – Mass Performance Video!

Wed 23 December 2020

Here’s the mass performance video of the Christmas Song for Wakefield 2020 ‘We’ll Make It Through’. The song was especially written by Phil Needham & James Lewis for the finale of the WMS Big Sing at Christmas that virtually brought many schools together from across the Wakefield district! This video features some of those recordings and is led by Wakefield ONEVoice Staff Council Choir! The performance also features special guests, Netherton J&I School Singers, Wakefield Youth Choir and Musica Holme Valley Family Pop Choir.

The song has a positive message about making it through the festive period and current times. Dedicated to all those people that cannot be together this Christmas and to those key workers that have helped to keep us safe over the last few months.

WMS Virtual Big Play at Christmas

Thu 17 December 2020

A massive thanks to everybody that took part in the Virtual Big Sing on Tuesday! What an amazing turn out and thank you so much for the support and lovely comments. Please join us on Thursday 17th December for the BIG PLAY live on Facebook at 7pm. Just click on the link to find the page and watch the broadcast WMS Big Play at Christmas

The event will be hosted by Phil Needham and Amanda Spalding and will feature musical contributions from young musicians, ensembles and schools across the district, including Wakefield Youth Orchestra. The concert will also be a celebration of all the fantastic music making and projects that have still continued throughout the pandemic over the last few months!

If you don’t manage to join us at the time you will be able to view the concert afterwards.

Wishing everyone a Safe Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


A Christmas Song for Wakefield – WMS Big Sing 2020

Mon 16 November 2020

A Christmas Song for Wakefield

Wakefield OneVoice staff council choir are set to record a brand new Christmas song and they need your help. They would like as many people as possible to learn the song and then send in their video recording to contribute to wonderful massive festive recording! The video will be premiered live on Facebook on Tuesday the 15th December at 1.30pm where the song will also be performed live by thousands of young people from schools across the Wakefield district!

The song ‘We’ll Make It Through’ has been specially written by Phil Needham (Head of the Music Service) and James Lewis (Council Choir Director) and has a real positive message of hope. It’s a song about Christmas this year with a theme that combines the isolation that many people have felt through the pandemic with similar situations that many also face at Christmas. The song takes you on a journey from cold to warmth, dark to light and really lifts your spirits. James and Phil had to fight off Sir Cliff, Sir Geldof and Mr Barlow who were all dead keen to get their hands on the song which they firmly state is staying in Wakefield – at the moment!

So how can you get involved? You can first of all listen to the song and start to learn it on the Wakefield Music Education Hub YouTube channel above. You can then email to find out more and register your interest and we will send out more details of how you can simply get your recording done and submitted even if it is only a short contribution to the song.

You can also join James and Phil for 2 interactive live Zoom sessions to find out more about the song and learn the song in a bit more detail. These are running for about 30 mins on Wednesday 25th November at 12.30pm and 7.00pm. You can book your place on the link below:

12.30pm Session:

7pm Session:

Don’t Stop Believin’ – WMS Big Play 2020

Sun 15 November 2020

It’s taken a while, a lot of hard work and you didn’t stop believin’ and eventually it’s landed! Another brilliant performance by young musicians in Wakefield from across 5 Music Centres as part of the Big Play 2020! Thank you to everyone that took part and the WMS Music Centre staff for making it happen and of course to Nick Park for knocking it all together. Well done everyone and hold on to that feeling’. Enjoy!

WMS Virtual BIG SING at Christmas 2020!

Mon 12 October 2020

After the success of this year’s Virtual Big Sing throughout the summer term we have decided to run a WMS Big Sing at Christmas on Tuesday the 15th of December 2020 at 1.30pm. This will be broadcast live on Facebook and will last for about 45 mins and like last time will include some fun warm ups and guest appearances in addition to our festive ‘Big Songs’. The repertoire will also include a brand new song written for Wakefield which will be launched just after half term! There will of course be plenty of opportunities for everyone to share and celebrate their contributions on social media too before and after the event. please follow our Big Sing page on Facebook

Wakefield schools and choirs can now register for free here which will also give you access to a OneDrive with supporting resources so you can get learning a couple of the songs straight away!

Keep singing safely and keep smiling!

Phil and the WMS Team


Mon 14 September 2020


At WMS we are continuing to adapt and find new innovative ways of working. While we are not able to run face to face ensembles at the moment due to COVD-19 restrictions and guidance, we have taken this exciting opportunity to go digital and offer many of our much loved ensembles virtually. Please see details below for each Music Centre which you can also follow on Facebook.

Everybody should have now received an email about these brand new Virtual Music Centres. If you haven’t received an email about how to sign up then please check your junk mail or email for further details and to check that we have your most up to date contacts.

Whilst we cannot fully replicate the live face to face ensemble experience, pupils are able to connect with their Music Centre friends, progress with their ensemble playing and try out more advanced groups if they feel ready and comfortable to do so. Music Centre sessions will normally last for 30 minutes and delivered via Zoom. Details below. All sessions will be free of charge until October Half Term 2020 until we can review the situation.

Don’t worry if you have missed the deadline for this coming Saturday as you will be able to enroll at any point by emailing the sign up documents by the close of play on a Wednesday. Please note you only have to sign up once to join the Music Centre for this half term.

If you are completely new to Music Centre activities and would like further details or how to get involved please get in touch with our Assistant Principal, Amanda Spalding on the email above.

Manygates MC Facebook

Pontefract MC Facebook

Outwood MC Facebook

Minsthorpe MC Facebook

Horbury & Ossett MC Facebook




THAT STRING THING! – WMS Big Play 2020 (Pt2)

Wed 29 July 2020

Here’s the brand new lockdown performance of ‘Somewhere Over The Rainbow’ by talented young WMS string players and their teachers. Well done to everybody that took part to make for such a great recording! Thanks again to Mr Nick Park for putting it all together into one big video! #KeepMakingMusic

WMS Big Sing 2020 – Wakefield ONEVoice

Fri 3 July 2020

Our Big Sing entered it’s 10th Anniversary this year and the celebrations were going to be even bigger. It became evident early on that things were going to be a little different this year. No beautiful Wakefield Cathedral, no appreciative live audience and no mass choir of 400 eager smiling young faces and voices. So what did we do? Move the whole thing online and celebrate it over a longer period with 3 virtual events! The response and engagement has been truly amazing and humbling with over 70 Wakefield schools registered and a multitude of lockdown families taking part from home.

So if you haven’t taken part so far, why not spend a good day at school, or a night with all the family, learning all the tunes and join us for the Grand Finale of WMS Big Sing on the 15th July when we will go live on Facebook at 10.30am. You can find more details by clicking here

Here’s a summary of all of our BIG SONGS…..


Here’s the full vocal version to the launch song ‘ONE’. A song about unity and coming together in harmony through Music. Potential future Eurovision entry for Wakefield! Big thanks to Mr Nick Park for producing the video. Get learning all the words and sign language! You can also find the backing track on our YouTube Channel. Written by Phil Needham.


RIGHT THERE WITH YOU was a brand new song written on Thursday evening after clapping for the Nurses and launched on the 12th May at part 1 of the Big Sing – International Nurses Day. An upbeat song with an electronic 80s groove and dedicated to the NHS. Written by Phil Needham.


BIG WHEELS was the key song for part 2 of of the WMS Big Sing on World Bicycle Day – June 3rd. Written by Phil Needham and dedicated to all the Teachers, Youth Workers and Professionals that keep the cogs turning and work together to keep things moving for our young people. The song has a message about working hard, keeping going and not always taking the easy route. It’s sometimes good to tackle the mountain, get to the top and see where you have come from and where you are heading – the rewards in life can be far greater. Keep Singing, Keep Cycling and Keep Smiling!


1,2,3, GOOD TO BE ME! The first of 2 songs for the final instalment of the WMS Big Sing 2020 on the 15th July.

This is a favourite on the national ‘Sing Up’ site and was written by Geraldine Gaunt, Mel Barber and Phil Needham as part of the ‘SEAL Songs in Action’ resources which many schools use up and down the country. The song is easy to learn with really accessible sign language performed by ‘Music and the Deaf’. The song celebrates the individuality of every single person whatever their talents, abilities, background, colour or religion and should be performed with lot’s of smiles!


WE CAN BE KIND is the final brilliant song for the Grand Finale of WMS Big Sing on the 15th July at 10.30am. A reflective song that basically says that ‘kindness’ is one of the greatest gifts we have to give to one another, especially in these times. The song is written by David Friedman and sung by Nancy LaMott. This version has beautiful British Sign Language created and performed by Dr Paul Whittaker OBE. You might also want to check out another performance on a previous post by our very own Zoe Dunphy – ManyVoices Choir and previously Wakefield Youth Choir. Look out for Paul’s sign language video tutorials too!

WMS Big Play 2020 – Ode To Joy

Fri 3 July 2020

Here’s the brand new video of Beethoven’s Ode to Joy as part of the WMS Big Play 2020! The performance includes contributions from over 100 young musicians and teachers! Brought together from Manygates, Minsthorpe, Outwood, Pontefract and Horbury & Ossett Saturday morning Music Centres. A massive achievement and lots of hard work from all the young people and staff that took part. A couple of parents may have even snuck in too!

A special thanks to Mr Wood for arranging and coordinating all of the parts and Mr Park for mixing it (and remixing it) and putting it all together! The video features talented young musicians of all different levels and the team has worked hard to include every single contribution. #KeepMakingMusic

String Players! Make sure to check out Part 2 of the WMS Big Play – THAT STRING THING!

WMS Teachers in Lockdown!

Sun 28 June 2020

A ‘Big Hello’ and ‘Missing You’ from all the talented teachers in Lockdown here at Wakefield Music Services. For an extra challenge, see how many teachers you can spot and how many tunes and instruments you can identify. Warning!! – Some may appear a little different to how you know them!

Many thanks to Mr Ellis at the start of the video for putting the whole thing together.


Updates & Response to COVID-19 – July 2020

Fri 3 April 2020

We hope you are all keeping safe and are finding some time to play your instruments, sing and keep making music. With very recent announcements from the government about the full reopening of schools we are hoping that we will be able to shed some more light on the picture for September as regards music provision. I am so proud of the staff and teachers here at WMS, all the hard work they do and how they have adapted to continue to support our young musicians in the virtual world! Check out their video here. Here’s a few updates on how the great team at WMS can support you and things you can get involved with.

‘Keep In Touch’ Online Lessons

All WMS students should have received information with their annual reports about these free online tuition lessons with their teacher. We hope that as many of you as possible take up this opportunity. Our teachers may be able to deliver several lessons depending on the uptake. The feedback from those young people that have taken part so far has been really positive! If you need more information please email

Online Learning – Charanga

Our teachers have been working hard to create lessons and resources for students to continue learning which are available on Charanga, all primary school instrumental students should now have received a login. Resources have now been created and uploaded for secondary pupils and you should receive an email within the next few days. If you haven’t received anything then please email us at The same email can then be used if you want to send through anything for the teacher to listen to or comment on and reply to. We will continue to update resources throughout the coming weeks and are also busy putting lots more resources and ideas together to expand our remote learning support. Click here to see some great links to other fantastic online resources!

Big Sing 2020!

It’s 10 years since we began our annual Big Sing and this year we want as many schools, individuals, families, choirs and teachers to join together and celebrate! This is also ideal for our 4000 young musicians who take part in our weekly Whole Class First Access Lessons. You can find a summary and links to all the songs here. Please like and share our dedicated facebook page to keep up to date and look out for #BigSing2020  #KeepMakingMusic

Virtual Music Centre – WMS Big Play 2020

Please click on the links to see how we have been supporting our ensemble and Music Centre members. We still have many things to develop but the first part of the Big Play (Ode To Joy) was a tremendous success. String Players can get involved with ‘That String Thing’ and look out for the forthcoming Lock Down Rock that budding rock and pop musicians can get involved with over the summer. Our dedicated Music Centre team are also piloting Virtual Music Ensembles so look out for these opportunities very soon.

Annual Pupils Reports

Our teachers have completed writing pupil reports for all those young people that have individual or small group instrumental lessons with WMS. Please email if you have not received yours by the beginning of July. If you could also please double check that we have the most up to date email address and mobile number that would be appreciated.

Social Media & Website

Our online platforms are often the easiest to keep everybody up to date. Using these platforms also helps with minimising usage on the council systems which are being heavily utilised at the moment and needed for critical services. We will continue to update these so please subscribe, follow us, like us and share!




Best wishes

Phil and the WMS Team


Important Information – Response to Coronavirus

Tue 17 March 2020

With the recent Coronavirus developments and announcements over the last few hours we have had to take local and national advice and make some hard decisions in order to help protect the health of both pupils, staff and families. Please see the updates below:

Ensembles & Music Centres & Central Teaching Cancelled
With our main base at Manygates now shut to the public and further direction from the government and council for people to only attend essential activities, we have regrettably had to cancel and suspend all groups and Music Centres until further notice. This also includes any centrally taught lessons in any of our centres. Lessons in schools will still be taught until further notice unless the school decides to cancel tuition from visiting teachers. We are currently further developing our online learning to support students through these unprecedented times.

Events – Regional Music for Youth & Hubalaboo
After recent announcements, these large scale events have been postponed/cancelled. The Music for Youth Festival at St Thomas a Becket on the 21st of March has been cancelled. Groups still have the opportunity to send in recorded entries and directors are aware of this. The Hubalaboo Music Hub Showcase Concerts has been moved to the 23rd of June. It is intended that all the same groups/schools will be involved in the event and any tickets already purchased will be valid.

Please follow, like and share any of our social media channels and subscribe to notifications from this website. Details below. If you could also double check that WMS emails are not landing in your junk email folder as this has been an issue in the past.
Twitter: @WakefieldMusHub
Facebook: @WakefieldMusicServices

On Line Learning and Support
As mentioned above we are working fast to further develop and promote our online learning and support through channels such as our Charanga site. If you are not aware of this then you can get to the site from our main website above.

If you have any concerns or queries then please don’t hesitate to email:

Many thanks for your continued support and best wishes through these challenging times.
Phil and the WMS Team


Tue 17 March 2020

Due to the recent government Coronavirus announcements this afternoon and confirmations from Wakefield Council, we have unfortunately had to cancel the Wakefield Regional Music for Youth Festival. The event was due to take place at St Thomas a Becket Catholic High School on Saturday 21st March. Groups taking part will still have the opportunity to enter through a recorded submission and all directors are aware of this.

We will be contacting families involved directly from tomorrow but please highlight and share this information with others. It would also be appreciated if you could encourage as many people as possible to subscribe to our website and like and follow our various Facebook and Twitter accounts so that we can keep everybody updated in these unprecedented times.

Thank you very much for your continued support.

Phil and the WMS team


Twitter @WakefieldMusHub

Facebook @WakefieldMusicServices

Full Time Instrumental String Teacher Needed

Mon 8 April 2019

Instrumental String Teacher (Upper Strings Specialist)

£17,208.00 to £27,216.00 Unqualified Teacher Scale
Full Time Permanent
Closing Date: 3rd May 2019
Are you an excellent and enthusiastic strings teacher who can inspire and motivate children?

We are seeking to appoint an innovative, committed and inspirational teacher to further develop the work of Wakefield Music Services, Lead Organisation for Wakefield Music Education Hub. The service is highly regarded and has received the highest rating from Arts Council England for the last 6 years! We provide quality diverse instrumental tuition and musical ensemble opportunities to over 7,500 young people in a variety of primary and secondary schools, academies and vibrant Music Centres every week.

The post involves instrumental tuition in a variety of primary and secondary schools including the teaching of whole class First Access (Wider Opportunities) lessons. This exciting opportunity will involve joining our existing team of string teachers and applicants would need to demonstrate that they have the skills and qualities to deliver high quality instrumental tuition. The successful candidate would also be expected to teach lower strings to beginner students. In addition to instrumental teaching, the post also involves directing groups and ensembles at one of our vibrant Saturday morning Music Centres.

Instrumental teachers employed by the service benefit from a wealth of high quality support including CPD and mentoring and enjoy nationally agreed conditions of service and a casual car user allowance. The successful applicant will be required to complete a Disclosure and Barring Application Form and to provide any criminal conviction information. To find out more about Wakefield Music Services please visit

Wakefield Council is wholly committed to ensuring children and vulnerable adults are fully supported and safe. We are dedicated to the safeguarding of all children and vulnerable adults whilst promoting their welfare. We expect all staff and volunteers to share this responsibility

Please contact Amanda Spalding for further details – or telephone 01924 303306

To apply for this post click here


What a Great Hubalaboo! 2019

Tue 2 April 2019

Thank you to everybody that performed and supported the Hubalaboo Showcase Concert at the beautiful Theatre Royal Wakefield last Tuesday evening. What a great display of young musical talent and enthusiasm from pre-school mini musicians to the older more accomplished! The event was also testimony to the remarkable dedication to music education from schools, teachers, parents and partner organisations from across the district!

Here’s to the forthcoming summer term jam packed full of events! Click here to find out more.