Each year the Brereton Memorial Fund awards one bursary of up to £200 which is designated as the John Guinn Legacy Bursary. First consideration for the John Guinn Legacy bursary is given to applicants from the Oldham, Rochdale and Tameside local area, and then to the youngest applicants applying for help with the costs of organ lessons or organ courses.

John Guinn trained at Chester College where he studied piano, organ and violin. During his teaching career he worked with young people at Queen Elizabeth’s School, Middleton and Hopwood Hall College, Rochdale. He began his work as an organist at the age of 18, at Prestwich Parish Church, followed by a period at St Mary’s Church, Prestwich.

From the late nineties until his death in 2014 John was heavily involved in the life of All Saints’ Church, Hamer, Rochdale, where he supported all aspects of church life. He will be particularly remembered for his role as organist and choir master, a role that he filled with love and dedication.

The Brereton Memorial fund committee is very grateful to the estate of John Guinn for the kind donation to set up a bursary in John’s name, which we hope will support youngsters who love organ playing and encourage a deeper involvement in the musical life of their local community.

John Guinn Legacy Bursary Recipients:

2021 – Matthew Foster, aged 19 years

2020 – Matthew Foster, aged 18 years

2019 – Euan Goodwin, aged 13 years.

2018 – Isaac Fee, aged 15 years

2017 – Sebastian Higgins, aged 12 years.