Cathedral Choirs Emergency Fund Grant Application Process

The Cathedral Choirs Emergency Fund (CCEF) is an initiative of the Cathedral Music Trust, the Ouseley Church Music Trust and the Choir Schools Association. The aim has been to raise £1,000,000 with which to support the restoration of Choral Music in Cathedrals following the financial crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Initial payments have already been made to sustain the Lay Clerks and Choral Scholars, with the Church Commissioners funding the 42 Anglican Cathedrals of England and the CCEF funding all of the other Cathedrals in Great Britain and Ireland.

We are acutely aware that circumstances are very challenging for cathedral music during the present crisis, and they are currently not getting easier. It will be hard to recover income streams over the Christmas period and beyond. Our first wish is to help where we can, and if you are in need of financial assistance for your music we encourage you to apply and we hope to be able to respond positively where funds allow.


Any cathedral in Great Britain and Ireland which under normal circumstances would sing a minimum of three fully choral services each week throughout the year, and aspires to achieve the highest standards of performance, is eligible to apply for a grant for funding needs for the period January – July 2021. The following criteria will be considered when making awards. Please note that not all criteria will necessarily be appropriate to the circumstances of all cathedrals. We will conduct a comparative exercise to establish where the greatest need lies.

Criteria for awarding a grant

The cathedral intends to continue with regular choral services in line with the musical scope and standards existing before the Covid-19 lockdown.
The cathedral has cogent and credible reasons why, unless additional funds are forthcoming,

  • it needs to diminish or discontinue all or part of its previously existing musical activities, and/or
  • it needs to make some or all of its paid musicians redundant.

The cathedral can demonstrate, as appropriate, that it:

  • has utilised all sources of loan finance available, both preferential and commercial;
  • has utilised all grant opportunities from Friends or similar organisations;
  • has utilised all grant opportunities offered by the Church Commissioners;
  • does not have sufficient funds, including restricted, to support its musical activities;
  • does not have sufficient general reserves to continue all its activities including music;
  • has used all available reliefs on preferential loans, bank overdrafts, deferred VAT and PAYE payments, rates relief, etc.;
  • cannot divert any funds from other resources to finance its musical activities.

The online Grant Application System opens on Monday, 28th September 2020 and closes at 11.59pm on Friday 23rd October, 2020. The Application System will allow users to partially complete the online form, save the information and return to finish the application at a later date.

Please click on the following link to start the application form process.

If you have any questions, please contact us at


Cathedral Choirs Emergency Fund Application Form