Barney is ready to rock in Sibford this summer

One of the most unique courses run in any of the Oscars campuses throughout the UK and Ireland is the music experience at Sibford School in the English countryside. The afternoon music activities are run by two teachers who between them have over forty-five of experience teaching music.


Barney Porter has been teaching music at Sibford for three years. The thirty-two-year-old has been teaching guitar since the age of fifteen and has played in many bands across England since then.

“This is the third year myself and my colleagues have worked on this activity together,” says Barney, “and we’ve had students who have come back to us each year so that’s nice that they come back.”

“We keep it simple and enjoyable. On the first day we learn maybe two very simple songs that they’ll know and then we set them more challenging songs as the days pass by. We record every day so that by the end of their time here our campers have a CD or MP3 they can take away. It’s something tangible for them and they like that. Most of the students will play the ukulele but they’ll get a chance to explore some of the other instruments too.”

Barney with one of his bands at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry

“The music room is great,” he continues. “There’s lots of space in there and that’s where all the ensemble stuff happens. There are drums, keyboards, bass amps, guitar amps and there’s plenty of ventilation too so if it gets too hot in there we can open up the windows and the whole town can hear what we’re up to. There are other smaller practice rooms too that people can go off to if they want to work on something one-to-one or on their own for a while.”

“It’s a great way to spend a few hours in the summer,” he concludes, “so I really enjoy it and as I said people come back so that’s probably a testimony to what we do.”