The people that we work with inspire us every day.
We love to hear from our beneficiaries, it’s our favourite thing!
The personal stories of those who have been affected by financial, physical or emotional issues and who have benefitted from our support can be motivating for us and inspirational for those who are suffering during these uncertain times.
As part of our Success Stories section, we interviewed our beneficiary Linda Lamon.
Q. How did you hear about the PRS Members’ Fund?
I heard about the PRS Members’ Fund through my PRS membership and newsletters/magazines
published by the organisation.
Q. When did you first approach the Fund?
It was whilst reading through the PRS magazine that I saw an advert for PRS accommodation in Dorset
for over 60’s. I was going through a difficult challenge in my life at the time because I had been caring
for my husband, who had Motor Neurone Disease. After he died my life was in turmoil and I felt I
needed to get away from what I knew to start a completely new life with music as the catalyst – or have
a complete breakdown – The PRS Members’ Fund helped save my sanity.
Q. How has the Fund helped you and in what way did it change/improve your life?
I applied and was accepted for a one bedroomed flat at Cyril Wood Court, which is a small community
of artists and musicians in the rural village of Bere Regis. It was a big step for me to leave my family
and move to Dorset from the Manchester area,but as a musician who had played at festivals
throughout the UK, there were by coincidence, two people living there who I knew already – and my
new neighbours were also musicians. There were of course some hurdles whilst settling in and
adapting to life as a single person again, but there was a network of support from the Housing
Association that managed the development and I had use of the communal lounge where I could meet
up with friends for jam sessions or to talk.
The greatest benefit was having my own safe space to create. A former band member had encouraged
me to continue writing my own songs and I wasted no time doing just that. Having like-minded people
surrounding me really helped the process of throwing myself into my work and getting meaningful
feedback. As a nature lover, I also enjoyed spending time walking in the nearby countryside and was
really pleased to hear that 160 acres of farmland had been bought to turn into a native forest rather
than have lots of houses built. I was inspired to write The New Woodland Song and was surprised to
hear from the new owner of the land – Brian May (from Queen). He had heard the song and loved it –
and asked me to perform it live for the official tree planting day. That really boosted my confidence,
although it was a bit scary performing in front of a legend! You can read more here.
The PRS Members Fund helped me to regain my confidence in my songwriting skills which enabled me
to set off on a different path in my life.
Q. How are things different now?
The regular 5 hour car journey’s up and down the M5 and M6 became a big chore because I missed
seeing my young grandchildren grow. I made the very difficult decision to leave Cyril Wood Court and
make my permanent home back up north, with a promise to my new friends in Dorset that I would
visit, which I now do often. My songwriting and composing has continued in my new home in Stockport
and has gone from strength to strength. I’ve worked remotely with musicians in Nashville, USA and
Bath, UK. My original songs were recently released on three albums, two EP’s and five singles with
radio plays on the BBC and independent stations worldwide and I’m receiving royalties. I’m mindful of
the fact that at 72, my music is highly unlikely to make the charts and that is not my aim – it’s to try
and make a difference with my work.
Music feeds my soul – it’s a vital part of my well-being and improves my mental health. It’s a natural
skill that I feel is important to share with the world. If others can derive pleasure and inspiration from
it, that’s a bonus and I now target charities that I can help with my songs. I was in dire danger of living
my life as well -meaning people felt I should ‘at my age’, but I’ve managed to prove to myself and
others that music is timeless and ageless, with a thriving community and it has saved me from being
pigeon- holed into a pathetic shadow of my true self in the golden years of my life. My life has become
more meaningful because I have re-discovered the musical creativity inside of me, thanks to the PRS
Q. Provide something short and inspirational to fellow PRS members who may need help.
We are on this earth once and for such a short time, so don’t waste it. Be true to yourself and if that
means asking for help to do it, please don’t delay. Asking for help is not a weakness – it’s a strength
because it takes so much courage to do it.
Music gives so much to the world, and here at the Fund we are proud to support those PRS members who make music possible.
Find out how we can help you through difficult times at prsmembersfund.com/support
Do you know someone who needs our help? We accept referrals from fellow PRS members, family and care workers.
We know sometimes it is hard to ask for help. We want to hear your voice…it’s your song, your music, your Fund.