External funding

Many students will attempt to seek funds from organisations other than the Conservatoire and those charitable trusts, companies and businesses that it deals with directly.  If you would like to apply for additional funds from external organisations please see the individual webpages listed by country or region (England, Wales, Scotland/EU, Northern Ireland or International) as well as the list of resources and websites below:

Dewar Arts Awards

The Dewar Awards fund exceptional young artists in any discipline who do not have the financial means to achieve their full potential.  To be eligible you must be:

  • Under the age of 30
  • Live or work in Scotland (non-UK students can apply using their Scottish postal address)
  • Demonstrate outstanding talent in any art form
  • Without the financial means to achieve their full potential

For further information go to http://www.dewarawards.org/home


Paul Hamlyn Foundation

This is a funding directory for visual artists and composers. The website was created to provide a portal for information on funding opportunities for individual artists and composers. http://fundingforartists.org.uk/

The Stanley Picker Trust

The Stanley Picker Trust provides a range of grants, scholarships and bursaries to assist students in the fields of fine and performing arts.  The trustees meet in April/May each year to make awards to assist students with their studies for the academic year starting on the following 1st September. Applications must be made in writing to the address below between 1st January and 31st March in order to be considered for the year beginning on the following September 1st.

The Administrator
Stanley Picker Trust
PO Box 1532
Kingston Upon Thames

An application should include a full curriculum vitae, details and proof of the course and institution to be attended, an academic and personal reference and a financial case for assistance


The Carnegie Trust

The Trust runs an Undergraduate Tuition Fee Grants Scheme which aims to support students who do not receive government funding towards the costs of their tuition fees following withdrawal from a previous course of study, academic repeats or because of their residence status.

The scheme supports the cost of tuition fees. To apply, you must be:

  • Studying towards a first undergraduate degree; (The majority of the students we support will have attended university or college in the past but did not complete their course.) In exceptional circumstances, applications from students who already have a university degree level qualification may be considered at the discretion of the Trust. If you have graduated before, please contact the Trust to check your eligibility.
  • On a full-time, part-time or distance learning undergraduate degree course offered by the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

UG Tuition Fee grants cover the cost of tuition fees up to a maximum of £1,820 (the Scottish “Home” tuition fee rate). Depending on applicants’ financial circumstances, students are awarded either the full “home” rate, or any part thereof that the Trust deems appropriate.

No support is available towards maintenance costs (such as rent, living expenses, travel etc.).
The fee grant is paid directly by the Trust to the university attended by the student. Successful applicants will be sent an award letter which they must present to their university. The university will then invoice the Trust for the tuition fees.

Applicants must meet all of the following criteria:

  • be of Scottish birth or descent (at least one parent born in Scotland), or must have had at least two full years of education at a secondary school in Scotland;
  • not be eligible for support towards the cost of tuition fees from either the Student Awards Agency for Scotland, Student Finance England, Student Finance Wales or Student Finance Northern Ireland, or any other similar scheme (including US Federal Loan Schemes).
  • reside in Scotland during the period of the course studied
  • must normally have passed the examinations relating to the previous stage of their curriculum before being eligible for support.

NOTE: applicants eligible for a SAAS/Student Loans Company maintenance loan are expected to take full advantage of the loans available to them.

If you are claiming eligibility on the basis of Scottish descent you should be able to explain your links to Scotland. For example, you will need to provide information about your Scottish ancestry and how often and for how long you have visited Scotland in the past. You will also need to explain why you are coming to Scotland to study. For instance, you will need to demonstrate why you cannot study in your country of ordinary residence. This is also very important if you were born in Scotland but do not currently reside in, or recently moved to Scotland to attend university.

Eligible students charged unregulated fees because of their immigration status, e.g. Overseas fees, should note that the Trust is unable to cover the cost of international fees. Successful applicants will receive the same amount as “Home” students. The remainder of the fees will need to be paid for by the student. Please bear this in mind when making an application as you will need to make further arrangements to cover the rest of your tuition fees.

More information on the Trust and the Undergraduate Tuition Fee Grants Scheme can be found at: https://www.carnegie-trust.org/

The Grants Register 2012 (Palgrave MacMillan 2011), The Directory of Grant Making Trusts 2012/13 (DSC) and the Charities Digest 2012 (Waterlow Information Services)

Available in the UK through local libraries

Help Musicians UK Funding Wizard can be accessed here

There are a number of organisations who operate searchable funding databases such as: