Ladies and Gentlemen, as President of the Royal College of Music and Patron of the More Music Campaign, I am delighted to be here with you today – at last! – to open the redeveloped Royal College of Music campus.
This has been a hugely ambitious project, I know, and it is a great testimony to the generosity of all your supporters and your unstinting dedication to the Royal College of Music that it has been achieved so successfully.
After years of preparation and hard work, we can see today see just what a transformation has been brought about, thanks to the vision of Director, Professor Colin Lawson, the R.C.M. Council, led by Lord Black, and Geoff Richards, Chair of the ongoing More Music Campaign and the Campaign Cabinet and Committee.
They have been supported by so many others who have laboured tirelessly to bring this enterprise to fruition. My particular thanks go to the architect, John Simpson, for his extraordinary work, which so sympathetically extends the fabric of the existing Blomfield building, blending the new and the historic to dramatic effect.
I know, of course, that all of this has only been brought about because of the many organizations and partners who have played a critical role – raising funds, giving of their time and generally providing reassurance – to ensure that excellence in music education continues across the generations.
In 1882, my great great grandfather, the then Prince of Wales and future King Edward VII, founded the Royal College of Music, with a vision that the College should be the recognised centre and head of the musical world. I need hardly say that I am enormously proud of the unique place the College continues to hold in Britain’s musical and cultural life, and across the globe.
To every member of the Royal College of Music family – student, staff or supporter – I can only offer my warmest congratulations on the realization of a long-held ambition and declare this More Music extension well and truly open.