MORE about SPO Community Concerts -

  • why we hold them

  • who they are for

  • how you can help

  • how to have one in your neighbourhood.

The purpose of an SPO Community Concert is to provide access to great music to people who might not otherwise encounter it because:

  • They are less mobile and can’t or don’t want to travel to events

  • They are older and don’t want to go out in the evenings

  • Classical music is not part of their experience

  • They are deterred by the cost

Who comes to them?

It is likely that an event of this type will appeal to people who already have a love of music and hear it from time to time; they of course are welcome too, but it is axiomatic that we try to reach people for whom it will be an unusual, or even a first-time experience.

What do the audience experience?

  • Lifts to the event, and home again, for anyone who needs them, provided by a trustworthy local volunteer.

  • A personal welcome and introduction from Leslie Olive or another member of the SPO leadership team.

  • A concert by a quartet of musicians playing music carefully chosen to be attractive without “dumbing down” for about an hour.

  • A finger buffet lunch or afternoon tea following the concert.

  • A simple souvenir, such as an SPO pen, as a memento of the occasion.

The Lunch

A finger buffet lunch is provided by local people, who donate their time and the ingredients used.

They also make up the team to prepare, serve, and clear up.

How much are the tickets?

We aim for these concerts to be free of charge. This is achieved by a combination of business sponsorship or grants to cover the unavoidable costs, local people providing and preparing the lunch, parish councils providing the venue free or at a reduced rate, and so on. After the first event, in Rattlesden, some members of the audience said there should have been a retiring collection, so we plan to do this in future.


The SPO contact will bring feedback cards or forms and encourage everyone to fill them in (using SPO branded ballpoint pens which the audience can take away with them.) 

The Community Concert is absolutely an event in its own right, but it should also be an opportunity to point towards a forthcoming SPO concert and highlight opportunities for easy access to it.

Bring a Community Concert to my neighbourhood

Our Community Concerts are most successful when they have a good link into their neighbourhood - someone who really wants it to happen!


To start a conversation with us about a visit, email and let us know of your interest. We will be glad to work with you to create an event which will serve local people and provide an occasion when, for some at least, loneliness and isolation might perhaps seem just that little bit less overwhelming. 

Where we have been so far

Our vision is to serve the whole of our largely rural county of Suffolk - and beyond - providing opportunities for the whole community, including older people and children. Many of our Community Days bring together music-making in the village hall with workshops for children at their schools. This outreach work has taken us to venues from Eye in the North to Stoke-by-Nayland in the south, and from Exning in the west to Trimley in the east, including:


Bury St Edmunds (Hardwick)


East Bergholt










Needham Market






Trimley St Mary


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Some photography courtesy of Wandering River 

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