Alan Surtees Trust invites its first grant applications

Alan Surtees, the co-founder and director of Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Alan Surtees, the co-founder and director of Shrewsbury Folk Festival

A trust set up in memory of the co-founder of one of the country’s leading folk festivals is inviting applications for its first round of grant giving.

Three awards of up to £1,000 each will be made to young and emerging musicians, dancers or singers by the Alan Surtees Trust, which was established following the death of the Director of Shrewsbury Folk Festival in June 2017.

The grants will be given to artists who show exceptional skill, talent and promise in their field and whose work is rooted in, or influenced by, folk and traditional music and arts. The funding can go towards a variety of uses included mentoring, new instruments and equipment, or recording a debut album.

Clog dancer and musician Hannah James, who spearheaded the launch of the trust and is now its chair, said the grants could make a real difference to a young musician or dancer.

“As someone who has benefitted from grants in early stages of their career, I know how it can help you grow and develop your career. Alan was passionate about discovering and helping young performers make their name and this is a very fitting way to open the grant giving from the trust in his name.

“These grants could be used for a wide variety of things that could support people in the early stages of their career or at a vital stage.

“Our remit is to support young and emerging musicians and support new music and dance projects in the folk tradition and we are excited about the possibilities for the future. We have had great support from the Shrewsbury Folk Festival and nationwide folk community and we are actively exploring a number of fundraising ideas to bring more income to the trust so we can help as many people as possible.”

Funds have so far been raised from the sale of a 15-track CD ‘Resound’ featuring tracks from artists including Oysterband, Jon Boden, Grace Petrie and Karine Polwart. More fundraising events are planned to continue raising money for further grants in future years.


Applicants for the grants should be aged between 16 and 30 at the time of application. They must live in the UK and not already have significant financial backing.

Grants of up to £1,000 per person while be given for mentoring and tuition from experts in the genre, hiring of rehearsal and creative space, costs towards new instruments and equipment, recording and production of a debut album, production of promotional materials or project research and development expenses such as artist fees or travel expenses.

The closing date for applications is April 9. Only successful candidates will be contacted and the three successful recipients will be announced in June.

For more information and to apply for a grant go to: Resound can be purchased through

Follow the trust on Twitter @ASurteesTrust or on Facebook @AlanSurteesTrust