Arts Council of Northern Ireland

The Funding and Development Agency
for The Arts in Northern Ireland

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Webinar Q&A: Musical Instruments for Bands

Friday 15th October 2021 at 12pm 0 Comments

The Arts Council has designed this programme to increase the quality of music-making in the community by helping bands to replace worn-out instruments and purchase new instruments.

To support prospective applicants to the programme, the Arts Council hosted an online webinar on Tuesday 12th October 2021 to enable applicants to find out more and ask Arts Council staff questions.

The Questions and Answers from the sessions have been published below.

Question 1:
If the application is submitted early would there be a chance that one of the arts council officials could come back in time before the deadline if something needs adjusted or fixed or once it's in it just goes through the process after Monday lunchtime?

The Arts Council regrets that it will be unable to contact you once your application has been submitted to ask you to supply any missing information or in relation to any queries about your application so please take note of the instructions on Pg. 7 of the GN which states that ‘applicants need to submit all the mandatory enclosures at the point of application, otherwise the application will be ineligible’.

Question 2:
I am helping a local Orange Lodge to set up a band in their village and I thought this was perfect for them however they wouldn't have recordings etc. as there is no band as of yet. Can they apply for this scheme?

Where an organisation cannot submit all the mandatory documentation set out in the Pgs. 10-13 of Guidance Notes, unfortunately the application would be made ineligible for assessment.

Question 3:
More clarification on the videos of the band required - how can the band be identified and what are you looking for in the recordings?

Two (2) recent (within the last 3 years, from 1 October 2018 to 30 September 2021) audio or video recordings of your band performing. These should be of no more than 8 minutes each and should be of suitable recording quality, this is to help us assess against criteria 1 and the quality of musicianship within the band. If you are providing video recordings, your band must be clearly identifiable, this is to ensure it is your band performing.

Question 4:
Do multiple quotes need to be for the exact same make and model of instrument as long as it's the same instrument? E.g. often multiple suppliers cannot provide the exact same model of instrument for e.g. an Eb Tuba.

As long as they are for the same type of instrument

Question 5:
Is a manufacturer of similar instruments ok?

Quotes are acceptable for the same type of instrument, for example, the purchase of Bb flutes/tubas/drums made by different manufactures. The quantity of items to be purchase must be the same on each quotation. However if an organisation wishes to purchase 10 flutes and 10 drums but only supplier can provide a quote for both instruments, you can submit 3 quotations. Supplier A 10 x flutes and 10 x drums, Supplier B 10 x flutes and Supplier C 10 x drums.

Question 6:
The signed Accounts are required up to 31st March however, our Financial Year runs to the calendar year January to December. Do we need a special set of Accounts to allow for this?

If the accounts uploaded are not for the year 31 March 2021 (i.e., if your most recent accounts are for the period January to December 2020 financial year), we require a set of management accounts covering the intervening period, up to 31 March 2021. These should demonstrate funds carried over for the period ending 31 December 2020 and detail any income and expenditure from period 1st January – 31 March 2021.

Question 7:
If the quote is a screen capture of a website, I assume these needs to explicitly list a delivery date. I assume e.g. checkout showing a delivery date is fine. Some sites don't often show an exact delivery date at checkout - I assume a quote from that supplier listing this delivery date is needed in that case.

Screen captures from online websites are acceptable as long as it can demonstrate goods are in stock and ready for delivery.

Question 8:
Can the quote uploaded be in PDF form?

All mandatory documents must be in Word, Excel or pdf formats. We cannot accept documents in other formats. Web links or website addresses in lieu of quotations are not acceptable and will result in your application being made ineligible.

Question 9:
In relation to the use for practice of an orange would an email from the secretary of the lodge be ok or would it need to be a letter on headed paper?

If an organisation, applying for funding does not have a rental agreement/own/lease a property. You should request the venue/lodge provide a written letter indicating that the organisation does not have a rental agreement in place but as members have permission to make use of its facilities for regular band practice.

Question 10:
Is priority given to competition bands with already established high musicianship or will new bands who aim to achieve this but aren't at this level yet be given equal consideration?

All bands are assessed equally on the merit of their application against the 3 criteria
Criterion 1: Quality & development of the arts activity
Criterion 2: Public Benefit
Criterion 3: Organisational and financial viability, including quality of management

Question 11:
In the list of currently owned instruments we have a number of unknown age and make accordions as they where bought second hand from other bands and individuals when the band was formed. Is it ok to say we have x no of assorted accordions over 30 years old etc.

Yes this is fine

Question 12:
We are a small band & accounts are agreed by committee and certified and signed by internal auditors. Would this be acceptable?

Yes this is fine and should date they had been adopted.

Question 13:
Does the chair have to sign the accounts?

In terms of good practice, accounts submitted should be signed by both the Chair and Treasurer of the organisation and dated as when adopted. A statement could be included indicating that these accounts are a true and accurate reflections of the organisations financial records for the period 1st April 2020 – 31 March 2021

Question 14:
Can we contact you when filling in the forms?

Yes, any guidance you need please reach out. Our contact emails are included in the guidance notes.

To view the guidance notes and to apply, visit

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