BLOG November 2019 

It’s almost exactly one year since my unscheduled visit to Papworth and now I’m just back from the graduation ceremony held at Chichester cathedral for our 2018-19 ESTA PG Cert students, and pleased to say that on a personal note, and fingers crossed, all is well.

By Easter 2019, I was pretty much back to work and just in time for the end of the 2018-19 ESTA PG Cert cohort and then fully back at work for the usual ESTA summer school at the University of Chichester in August, which marked the start of the 2019-20 programme.

Last night of the ESTA PG Cert at the ESTA summer school (August 2019) with student, Chong Kin Yip Paul.

This new cohort was the first step in our planned expansion, so with 27 students, 23 of whom are piano teachers, we really had our hands full. In addition to the regular ESTA summer school and PG Cert students, ESTA welcomed students joining an EPTA summer school and similarly an EPTA (China) summer school, both of which ran alongside the usual ESTA activities. It’s a delight to see these professional development programmes attracting students and to know that there remains a huge demand from instrumental and vocal teachers for continuing professional development.

At the end of September, the Plus 5s, Morgan band played for the French Morgan car owners club at Chateau Marsannay le Cote just outside Dijon for their annual event.

Definitely a most refreshing venue, reached after a long but easy drive, not in the Morgan I hasten to add, as it couldn’t accommodate all the necessary gear.

The evening itself was great fun with an enthusiastic crowd of some 200 Morgan owners and partners and an excellent meal served at the vineyard.

And so the year came to a relatively tranquil close with no hint of the trouble to come in 2020.

March 2020 

Lockdown and time to embark on a regular exercise regime and lose a bit more weight.

Lots of garden tidying, aided by this friendly robin, helped with this ambition.

As soon as Covid restrictions were lifted, we headed off to the Isle of Wight and spent most of the summer there.

Meanwhile, recruitment continued for the ESTA PG Cert 20-21 course despite the fact that the ESTA summer school had already been cancelled. Amazingly, during September, we were given the go-ahead for an entirely online course which was soon under way.

October 2020

The fourth cohort of 19 ESTA PG Cert students began their studies and the planned expansion of the course means that we now have brass, woodwind and guitar students in addition to teachers of bowed strings and piano. Plans are now well underway for the 2021 ESTA summer school, which we are keeping our fingers crossed for and the move to an all online environment means that we can implement two starting points on the PG Cert, September and January. The summer school will provide an optional supplement to the course.

February 2021 

The fifth cohort of students have begun the ESTA PG Cert as we’re now able to offer two starting points to teachers enrolling on the course. The trusty Morgan has passed its MOT and I’ve had my vaccine jab, so all we need now is an opportunity to get out and about.

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