Charging Policy

Our current fees for tuition, instrument hire, band, orchestra and choir membership are detailed on the following pages. All pupils must be registered with TVMS for any activity to take place. We aim to deliver 30 small group or individual lessons per academic year. Lessons vary in length depending on the length of time your child has been having lessons. Our teachers will advise on the most suitable lesson for your child if they receive individual tuition. Lessons average at 2-3 lessons per month depending on term dates and events (see ).

Cost of lessons for pupils

  • Pupils new to music are given ‘taster’ time with their chosen instrument/vocal tutor. This is subject to group viability and instruments available. During this taster time (Minimum 5 lessons in two months) parents can ‘opt out’ of the taster time and cancel any future lessons. Parents wanting to cancel MUST write/email directly to TVMS Support ( to avoid future charges and the cancellation policy being applied. Taster tuition is payable in advance and is TWO fee instalments for tuition and instrument hire, if applicable.
  • ‘Beginner’ Tuition only (including vocal) for tuition up to one year in small groups (4+) 20 minute lessons – 11 monthly instalments of £14.60. This automatically follows on from the Taster time unless cancelled by parent/carers.
  • ‘Continuing’ Tuition for pupils in year 2 onwards only (including vocal) small groups 30 minute lessons – 11 monthly instalments of £21.60. This automatically follows on from the Beginner Tuition unless cancelled by parents/carers. See Cancellation Policy for further information.
  • ‘Individual’ Tuition only (instrumental or vocal) as an individual lesson (subject to availability) 20 or 30 minute – 11 monthly instalments of £40.60
  • Instrument hire monthly flat rate to be added to tuition rates (if hire required) – 11 monthly instalments of £8.40.

Membership of all TVMS bands, orchestras and choirs as well as access to Theory Lessons is currently included in the above tuition fees.

  • Area band, orchestra and choir membership only – 11 monthly instalments of £7.40
  • Premier ensemble membership only – 11 monthly instalments of £13.00
  • There is no hire of TVMS instrument with ensemble only membership

Pupils eligible for Income Based Discount are entitled to a 50% discount to the above fees, including instrument hire and ‘ensemble only’ membership.

A sibling discount of 25% will be applied to tuition fees if you have more than one child registered with TVMS. There is no discount on instrument hire or ensemble only fees for second and subsequent children.

There is also a discount of 25% offered for second instrument tuition only. There will be no discount available for subsequent instrument/vocal tuition after this.

All discounts are capped at 50% subsidy for children who are entitled to Income Based Discount of fees.
All tuition, instrument hire and ‘ensemble only’ registrations are charged at 11 monthly instalments per academic year.


Your child’s annual music fee is paid in 11 monthly instalments from September to July each year.

Instalments are due by the 1st working day of each month. By registering for tuition/ensemble membership you are agreeing to pay by the first working day of each month.

We will send you an invoice schedule in August for the full academic year.

If you are joining part way through the academic year your fees will be reduced pro rata. You will be invoiced for the number of months you are registered in an academic year. Instalments are paid over the remaining months up to and including July.

If your child has received their first year of beginner tuition an amended payment schedule will be sent to you in due course.

If you wish to pay your annual invoice in full, please contact the Finance Section at TVMS on Tel: 01642 603600.

We take payment by monthly Direct Debit, and a Direct Debit Instruction is available here.

Instalments can also be made by debit or credit card online available 24 hours a day by visiting Select ‘Pay Current Fees.’ From the new screen click on ‘Tees Valley Music Service.’ This will bring a drop down menu. Select ‘Instrumental Tuition and Instrument Hire.’

You will need your account number (starting with G), invoice number and the amount you wish to pay.

Our teaching staff will not take payment from you. Staff are not based in TVMS as they work on a peripatetic basis.

First registration payments can be made by registering and paying online for which you will need the teacher information from the inside the Introduction to TVMS form. If you don’t have access to a computer please contact TVMS, where a form can be posted out to you. You can return your completed registration form and your cheque or postal order, payable to “Stockton Borough Council” to TVMS. Ensure your child’s school and name is written on the rear of your payment as we will not be able to reconcile your account without this information.

If you are entitled to Income Based Discount of fees you must download and complete a claim form and include proof of current evidence of entitlement. Claim forms can be downloaded at and selecting the ‘Parents’ tab. Registrations will be held until supporting evidence is received at TVMS. Claims cannot be back dated.

If instalments are not paid by the due date, your child’s lessons will be suspended until payment is made. Please note that any weeks where tuition is suspended due to failure to pay monthly instalments by the due date, weekly lesson numbers will continue be counted as part of the annual total as our teaching staff have been allocated to deliver tuition at this time.

Refund and Cancellation Policy


To cancel lessons without penalty, written notice must be received at TVMS office by the following dates:-

Autumn term 30th November
Spring term 31st March
Summer term 30th June

Payment will be due until the end of the term in which notice is received. There is no refund for band, orchestra or choir fees.

Lessons offered are recorded by teachers on a register. If, at the end of the full year period September-July, we have not offered 30 lessons (pro rata if lessons commenced part way through year), we will credit your account with the number of lessons missed.

Cancellation of Lessons/Membership/ Instrument hire

If you decide to stop your child’s tuition / band attendance within the year, you should contact the TVMS office via email to ensure we update your account accordingly. You will continue to be liable to pay instalments until the end of the term in which we receive written notification from you.

Please email TVMS office to advise us of your decision to cancel tuition and ensemble membership by the following dates.

Autumn term 30th November
Spring term 31st March
Summer term 30th June

You will receive an email acknowledging your request. It is vitally important that you notify TVMS office as our teachers are not office based. If you inform teaching staff we will not receive your cancellation instruction in time to action your account and you will continue to be liable for the full cost of lessons/memberships/instrument hire until the end of the subsequent term in which we are informed in writing. We will contact our teacher and let them know about your decision. Please email . Alternatively, you can post you a letter confirming the cancellation to TVMS, Frederick Nattrass Centre, Swale Road, Stockton on Tees, TS20 1BY.
If you cancel lessons and the target number of lessons have been offered you will be required to pay your 11 instalments to the end of the academic year.

Lessons and memberships continue term on term and year on year until written notice is received at TVMS office.

Lesson Charges & Absence

If your child does not attend a lesson without giving at least 48 hours prior notice, or the absence is outside of the control of TVMS, including suspended tuition, it will be included in the lesson count. Lessons missed due to TVMS teacher absence will not be charged for.

In the event of a long term absence of a TVMS teacher we will endeavour to cover the absence with another specialist teacher. Please note that it can sometimes take up to a month to organise this cover because we are committed to the local authority safeguarding procedures and all teachers working for us have to undergo DBS clearance and pre-employment checks before they can start work with us. We will monitor lesson numbers closely and amend fees accordingly at the end of the academic year.

Instrument Hire

If the instrument is not returned to TVMS when tuition ceases, you will be invoiced for the full replacement value.

Instrument hire is only available for those pupils registered for tuition with TVMS.

Please note that if you decide to purchase your own instrument within the year, you need to contact TVMS office to ensure we update your account accordingly. You will continue to be liable to pay instalments until the end of the term in which we receive written notification from you, in line with the Cancellation and Refund Policy dates below.

Autumn term 30th November
Spring term 31st March
Summer term 30th June