Page last updated at 18:41 GMT, Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Chetham's School of Music launches new building appeal

An artist's impression of the new building
The new school will replace the existing Palatine building

A world-renowned music school in Manchester has launched an appeal to raise £1m towards a new building.

Chetham's School of Music is planning to build a new £36m building next to its current site in the city centre.

It hopes £1m of the costs will be gathered through its Raise the Roof appeal.

The new building would include a 400-seat concert hall, academic and music teaching rooms, and a small recital hall, the school said.

Head teacher Claire Hickman said: "The investment in the buildings will provide the best facilities for our students, however it is through the generosity of the wider public that we hope to create and grow a destination for music and cultural enthusiasts across the world and for our students to continue to 'Raise the roof'."

'Help fulfil dream'

Prince Edward, the school's royal patron, called upon music enthusiasts to support the appeal.

He said: "The school is embarking on an ambitious yet exciting development and I urge people to consider how they can help us to fulfil our dream for the next era of young musicians as well as future generations of audiences."

When completed, part of the school - the Palatine building - will be demolished to expose the school's historic buildings which are currently hidden.

A new bridge will also be built across the River Irwell, which runs through the site, to allow the 290 pupils to get from the old school to the new building.

It is hoped work will start at the end of March, and the new building will open in 2012.

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