Disharmony at Music Service

Milton Keynes Music Centre
Milton Keynes Music Centre

ALLEGED wrongdoings at the prestigious Milton Keynes Music Service have been reported to police and investigated by the council, the Citizen can reveal.

The allegations centre around the council-run service’s link with the Mansek project to teach music to children in Ghana.

This week that link was severed by the council due to ‘changing priorities’.

Over the past 12 years thousands of pounds have been raised for Mansek through music service former assistant head Jenny Brown and her husband Mike.

Dozens of pupils have paid to visit Ghana.

Some parents became concerned when they realised Mansek was not a charity, but a private music tuition business run by a Ghanaian man.

More alarm was caused when an investigation by the council’s audit committee found the music service itself was in chaos and a large number of instruments – believed to be up to 600 – was missing.

The report stated: ‘Some aspects of the (music) service are inadequately controlled with major areas of weakness and risk. There is a risk of loss, fraud, impropriety and/or damage to reputation.’

These findings were passed to police but no action was taken.

The council gives £250,000 a year to the service, which employs 90 tutors to teach thousands of city children.

This week a spokesman said: “We have no plans to work with Mansek any further, due to changing capacity and priorities in the service.”

Meanwhile Jenny Brown said the scheme was a genuine way to bring music to Ghanaians.

“We never professed to be a charity and no music service instruments have ever been left in Ghana,” she said.