The heart-warming story of how Derbyshire people helped find a beautiful instrument for a refugee

A refugee has been presented with a beautiful instrument he wanted – thanks to help from big-hearted people in Derbyshire.

Thursday, 1st April 2021, 3:47 pm
Updated Thursday, 1st April 2021, 3:50 pm

A few weeks ago, a group of asylum seekers arrived in Sheffield.

The mainly young men, who came to this country with nothing, made requests for things like jeans, t-shirts and toiletries.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

A lute is a plucked stringed musical instrument.
A lute is a plucked stringed musical instrument.

One, however, made an intriguing request for a blood pressure monitor, a skateboard and a lute – which is a plucked stringed musical instrument.

Stand up to Racism put out an appeal across Derbyshire and car loads of donations were soon delivered.

Carol Fieldhouse, a musician from Wirksworth who hosts workshops for refugees in Derby, was intrigued by the request for a lute.

She decided to ask the Lute Society if it would make a plea for donations on its website.

Chesterfield Stand up to Racism members Megan Taki, left, and Barbara Sansome with the lute at a recent demonstration near the Crooked Spire.

The society did – and within 24 hours Carol had an offer of a Turkish lute called an ord.

The donor, who insisted on staying anonymous, said: “Who I am doesn’t matter.

“What does matter is that we look for things that unite us as human beings, like music, and spread what unites rather than divides, and that more of us engage in acts of love, generosity and kindness.”

The lute, described as a ‘beautiful instrument’, was delivered to a hostel in Sheffield – but the refugee who requested it had been moved on.

Ebru Garnett, a volunteer at the hostel, described their dismay and said: “We left it to one side and were busy but then we opened the case and were amazed at its beauty.

“Just then, two refugees walked by and saw it and knew straight away who it was for and where he was.”

So on Saturday Ebru was able to deliver it,

The refugee was said to be ‘completely delighted’.

Jeannie Robinson, of Chesterfield Stand up to Racism, said: “By the way, we also got the blood pressure monitor – but never got the skateboard!”

- If you can kindly donate a skateboard to the refugee, please email Derbyshire Times reporter Michael Broomhead at [email protected] We will ask Chesterfield Stand up to Racism to contact the first person who emails us

A message from Phil Bramley, Derbyshire Times editor

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription at www.localsubsplus.co.uk or buying a paper.