The Royal Society of Musicians is Britain’s oldest music charity and its aims remain as relevant today as they were in the earliest years – to provide immediate financial assistance to musicians unable to work due to accident, illness or old age. Being a charity run by musicians for musicians, the Society is uniquely placed to fully understand the challenges faced within the profession.
The Royal Society of Musicians was founded in 1738 as the “Fund for Decay’d Musicians”. 228 members of the profession signed its Declaration of Trust; they included Arne, Boyce, Carey, Festing, Greene, Pepusch, Edward Purcell (son of Henry), Roseingrave, Sammartini, Stanley (the blind organist and composer) and, most valuably, Handel. The Society still maintains at Drummond’s Bank the account which Michael Festing (the first Secretary) opened in November 1738. From the beginning Handel took part in the annual concerts for the Fund’s benefit, and he bequeathed it £1,000 in a 1759 codicil to his Will.
Article from http://www.royalsocietyofmusicians.org/history/
Nicole Crespo O´Donoghue signing the book of The Royal Society of Musicians