Music Service

Last updated 30 March 2015

Waltham Forest Music Service (WFMS) provides music tuition in many of the borough’s schools. We provide tuition in singing and a wide variety of instruments, many of which are available to hire at an affordable price. The service also runs a thriving Music School after the school day and on Saturday mornings.

From 5 January 2015, the music service will have new opening times:

Monday - 12.00pm - 4.30pm
Tuesday - 12.00pm - 4.30pm
Wednesday - 12.00pm - 6.30pm
Thursday - 12.00pn - 4.30pm
Friday - 9.30am - 4.00pm

Instrumental and vocal tuition

Learning a musical instrument helps pupils develop concentration, confidence, self-discipline, creativity, communication and team skills.

If you would like your child to begin lessons at school, please speak to the Head of Music or Music Co-ordinator and find out what instruments are available to learn.

Students have the opportunity to take instrumental and vocal exams at the Music Service.

Music School

A wide range of group and ensemble lessons run Monday to Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings. Ensembles are available for children of all standards and provide an excellent opportunity to play alongside others, develop performance skills and have fun. Every group performs in public once a term and many also have the opportunity to work with partner organisations such as the London Symphony Orchestra, London Chamber Orchestra or the Barbican.

Individual instrumental tuition is also available at Music School if it cannot be arranged at school. In addition, theory classes are available to help develop your child’s understanding of music. To register your interest in tuition or theory, please complete and return this form electronically or on paper.

Instrument hire

Instruments are available to hire if your child is learning with a WFMS teacher, who will hand them a form to start the process. The fees for 2014/15 are £19 per term or £9.50 for those in receipt of Free School Meals.

Once you have completed and handed in the form, the instrument will be available within two weeks, and in many cases much sooner.

When you come to collect the instrument, please bring the hire agreement, proof of address (such as a driving licence or recent utility bill) and proof of Free School Meals if applicable.

You will need to ensure that the instrument is adequately insured, either through household or specialist insurance.

Music School Groups/Ensembles

Membership of Music School groups/ensembles is £26 per term or £13 if in receipt of Free School Meals.  See below for the different Groups/Ensembles available.

Paying fees online

To pay for instrument hire, music school tuition or music school ensembles, please read these instructions (PDF).


Pay for music fees

Mini Musicians - babies and toddlers

We run a popular music making session for babies and toddlers at the Music Service.

Please complete the registration form or contact us to check availability

Music School rehearsal, tuition and concert dates

Spring 2015

Spring Term: Saturday 10 January - Saturday 28 March

Half Term: Saturday 14 February - Sunday 22 February

Beginners Concert, Waltham Forest Music Service: Friday 27 February

Solo Performance Platform, Leyton Sixth Form: Monday 16 March

Music School Spring Concert, Leyton Sixth Form: Monday 30 March

Music School groups and times

Advanced​ ​groups ​​
Dance Band​ ​Grade 5 + ​Wed 5.30-6.30pm
Youth Orchestra​ ​Grade 4 + ​Wed ​6.30-8pm


Intermediate groups​ ​​
Wind Band ​Grade 2-5 ​Wed 5.30-6.30pm
Forest Strings ​Grade 3 + ​Thu ​5.30-6.30pm


Junior groups
Training Wind Band ​Grade 1-2 ​Wed 4.30-5.20pm
Funk in the Forest Grade 1-4 Mon ​5.30-6.30pm
Saturday Strings​ Grade 1-2 Sat​ 9.15-10.15am
Guitar Group​ Grade 1 + Tue​ ​5.30-6.30pm
Foundation groups
Beginner Winds Pre ​Grade 1 ​Mon 4.30-5.30pm
Woodland Strings​ Pre Grade 1 Thu​ 4.15-5.15pm​


Theory classes (half hour each)
Grade Tuesday Saturday
1 ​4.00pm ​8.30am
2​ 4.30pm 9.00am​
3​ 5.00pm​ 9.30am​
4​ 5.30pm​ 10.00am​
5​ 6.00pm​ 10.30am

Wednesday aural classes

  • Grade 1-3 Wednesday 4.30 - 5pm
  • Grade 4-5 Wednesday 5.00 - 5.30pm 

Secondary Choir

Tuesday 6.30pm - 7.30pm. See the North East London Voices for more information.

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See also

  • What's on this term

    See key dates and events happening this term at the Music Service.

  • Pay online

    Choose 'Paying for other council services' and then 'Music Service'. A link to detailed instructions is available at the bottom of this page.

  • Register for tuition or theory

    Complete this form if you are interested in lessons at Music School. Please contact your child's school directly for lessons there.

  • Apply for a music teaching job

    Choose this link and then ‘Apply for a job at Waltham Forest Council’ to search for vacancies. Interviews are held termly and we do not accept CVs.

Contact details