In 1921 English tenor Gervase Elwes died tragically in a railway accident in Boston, USA.
Throughout his life, he had shown compassion and kindness to musicians and composers, counting Ralph Vaughan Williams and Edward Elgar as his friends.
Following his death, his friends set up a fund for musicians in his name and in 1930, this became the Musicians Benevolent Fund.
During the Second World War, pianist Myra Hess gave us the financial boost that we needed to continue our work by donating the proceeds of her famous concert series, which ran throughout the War at the National Gallery.
Our work has expanded to the point where, each year, we help over 2,000 individual musicians – covering a wide range of genres, ages and professional roles.
In 2014, we adopted the name Help Musicians UK to bring our message to an even wider range of musicians and supporters. We are proud to continue the tradition of compassion and kindness upon which we were founded.