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At the heart of English folk
National Youth Folk Ensemble


Read the Evaluation Summary of the National Youth Folk Ensemble 2016-18: The first two years, written by external evaluator Andrea Spain.


Partnership working and consultation have been very important to the development of the National Youth Folk Ensemble. We have consulted with the folk and music education sectors, including dialogues with professional folk artists, specialist folk organisations, music education hubs, schools, higher education providers, arts organisations and major venues. This scoping and research process has provided us with strong foundations for the programme and resulted in the two reports below.  


Mapping Survey 2015

To help with planning for the National Youth Folk Ensemble and associated engagement programme, in early 2015 we carried out a mapping survey with Sound Connections to audit youth folk music provision across England.

The full report, Youth Folk Music Activity in England: Findings from a national mapping survey, February – March 2015, summarises the findings from the survey.

Everyone involved in running youth folk music activities outside of the school curriculum, including those who have run activities in the past or plan to do so in the future, were invited to respond. The findings from the survey give us a greater understanding of youth folk music activities across England and indicate potential partner organisations and complementary activities to support the development of the National Youth Folk Ensemble and engagement programme.

Visit our Youth Folk Opportunities page to see our interactive map of current youth folk music activity in England and download our PDF directory.  


Consultation 2014

In early 2014, we worked with Sound Connections to consult with the folk music and music education sectors on the desirability and feasibility of creating a national youth folk music ensemble. The consultation also aimed to seek views from young people currently involved in folk music.

The consultation resulted in a report, Towards a National Youth Folk Music Ensemble, which was instrumental in helping to shape initial planning.



Consultation Report, March 2014
Download the consultation report (pdf)

Mapping Survey, May 2015 
Download the mapping survey report (pdf) 



Arts Council England


National Youth Folk Ensemble on Instagram

See highlights from the Ensemble's residential courses and performances