Wentworth Woodhouse

Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation TrustWentworth Woodhouse is one of the largest houses in Europe, it is a Grade I listed country house in the village of Wentworth, South Yorkshire. It was built between 1725 and 1750 and is currently owned by Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust, who aim to use the restoration as a catalyst for positive change in South Yorkshire.


Read more about The Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust.

University of York

The University of York’s MA in Stained Glass Conservation is an internationally recognised graduate programme.

The Radcliffe Trust has been pleased to support Stained Glass Conservation MA bursaries at The University of York for many years.   At a time of significant additional pressure on students financial resources, the Radcliffe bursaries have ensured that our students have been able to commit themselves wholeheartedly to the additional pressures of the professional placement, a commitment that makes any other part-time working impossible to sustain

Gemma Lees, A beneficiary from last year, refining freshly applied hand putty with a scalpel for a c.1300 window from the choir clerestory of Cologne Cathedral (NV 10c). Photo: Jenny Rumbach.

Aabby Barofka presenting the Jim Budd Stained Glass project to young visitors at the Churches Conservation Trust’s site at St Mary, Shrewsbury. Photo: Jim Budd

Three Choirs Festival 

The Radcliffe Trusts grant to Three Choirs has consolidated Three Choirs reputation for furthering their repertory of music. The festival continues to support aspiring young musicians, pre-professional players and composers writing the music of the 21st century; as it was in the 20th century commissioning Vaughan Williams, Elgar, Howells and Finzi to name a few.

A festival highlight was the Three Choirs Festival commission for a new work by composer Luke Styles for youth chorus and orchestra, and the grant from Radcliffe Trust made an essential contribution towards the funds necessary to pay for this world premiere performance in Hereford Cathedral.

Sailing Tectona CIC

Conservation and Restoration Project of a Heritage Wooden Tall Ship ‘Tectona’

This project, funded by The Radcliffe Trust has brought together the knowledge, skills and experience of skilled shipwrights, boat builders and sailors with the enthusiasm of regular weekly volunteers. The volunteers have included people from a wide range of backgrounds, including those in recovery from Addiction and Mental Health Issues, ex-service personnel, students, ex-offenders and retired people.   Together they have developed their skills and worked with their hands to conserve and rebuild the Tall Ship Tectona in order to get her sailing and providing life changing voyages to those in Recovery.

Piers (a local young man who had completed a boatbuilding apprenticeship with the RNLI) joined the Tectona refurbishment team with a great attitude and lots of skill but a gap in wooden boat building. Since joining Tectona’s refurbishment, he has gained invaluable experience from working on a real-life project alongside other shipwrights and volunteers. He has honed his woodworking skills whilst replacing the bulwarks and rebuilding the aft hatch. In September he is going on to complete a course at Falmouth Boat Building School and Tectona has inspired him to pursue a career in the heritage boat building industry.

Royal Opera House

The Radcliffe Trust has supported the Royal Opera House in memory of Ivor Guest, a former Trustee of the Trust since 2018, with the Associate Pianist role.

This stands unique within the sector, offering a young pianist a programme of structured training to approach a career as a ballet repetiteur. With the support from The Radcliffe Trust, the Royal Opera House were delighted to welcome pianist Zhu Sun to the role in September 2022.

This structured pathway has developed Zhu’s experience and confidence through an increasing level of responsibility and playing across several disciplines. She has developed a vast array of new, specialised skills required in this role, from developing a sharp understanding of the choreography and choreographic terms, to improvising in varying styles for dance, to providing music emulating that of the orchestra, to collaborating with conductors and communicating musical terminology through dance terminologies. This has been supported through one-to-one external teaching from leading class coaches, Nicki Williamson and Jonathan Still, and repertoire coaching with Kate Shipway, one of the most experienced Royal Ballet pianists, throughout Zhu’s tenure.

At a time when most UK conservatories offer no formal teaching for pianists to train as a ballet repetiteur, and the sector faces a real shortage of experienced ballet pianists in the UK, the Associate Pianist position tackles the need for formal, structured pathways that give talented and enthusiastic pianists the training, experience and confidence to be able to play for any ballet company in the world. Having excelled in her role as Associate Pianist this year, Zhu has proven she can.

Zhu Sun reflects on her time at the Royal Opera House and her experience as an Associate Pianist:

‘I realise that it does not only take good pianistic skills to fulfil the tasks that a ballet pianist faces on a daily basis – I need to know the choreography and provide music in a manner that an orchestra would, with timing and phrasing that I was not used to as a solo pianist, collaborating with conductors, communicating musical things with dancers and coaches in dance terminologies that they are familiar with.  The ballet class is an important yet very niche part of the job that requires very specific musicianship.’