Major boost for Harrogate’s AMP Awards

NADV. Winners Summer City from Ripon Grammar School at the Amp Awards 2011. 110217GS2z.
NADV. Winners Summer City from Ripon Grammar School at the Amp Awards 2011. 110217GS2z.

By Graham Chalmers

One of Yorkshire’s most successful battle of the bands for schools is expanding for the second time in two years.

The AMP Awards, first launched in Harrogate six years ago, is now set to host four, separate annual competitions - adding York and Bradford to the existing Harrogate district and Leeds events.

Combining a music and entrepreneurship competition for young people at secondary schools, the expansion is a sign of just how successful the AMP Awards have been in such a short space of time.

Thanks to funding from Youth Music and O2ThinkBig, around 40 secondary schools will now be involved in total.

Focusing on both music and enterprise, the awards involve the collaboration of pupils and staff at secondary schools with business mentors, music industry experts and charity partners.

One of the main organisers, Marian Farrar, business & community partnerships officer at St Aidan’s High School School. said:

“As well as being an exceptional showcase for young musical talent, the AMP Awards test business acumen, event planning, marketing and financial skills and prizes are given for most effective business team as well as best band.

“In recent years, there has also been the opportunity for up-and-coming young photographers to work alongside professional at the the event. “

Previous band winners of the AMP Awards, whose Harrogate final traditionally takes place at the Royal Hall, have signed with independent record labels, recorded debut albums in Los Angeles, gone on nationwide tours, and been played on primetime BBC Radio 1.

The first-ever winners, metal band Book of Job , from Harrogate, Metal band Book of Job recently had their debut album Hamartia released on Italian metal label Wormhole Death to great reviews.

The band said: “Winning the Amps back in 2009 was a massive thing for us. It gave us the chance to play venues such as Harrogate International Centre and Leeds o2 Academy.”

The AMPs, as they are affectionately called, have attracted major backers in the past such as Carlsbro, 6K Vision, itchykoo photographers, Harrogate Spa Water and Thirsty Planet.

The AMP Awards team are now recruiting schools and business mentors in Harrogate, Leeds, Bradford and York to take part in 2013/2014.

For information and contact details please visit