Young carpenter has ambitions of becoming professional musician

Talented carpentry student and musician Robert Beevers, from West Suffolk College

Talented carpentry student and musician Robert Beevers, from West Suffolk College - Credit: West Suffolk College

A carpentry student who has dreams of becoming a professional musician has said Ed Sheeran has "proved" you can make it even if you're from a rural area.

Robert Beevers, 16, has secured his first job in music with a weekly residency at the Edmunds Restaurant in the grounds of West Suffolk College where he studies.

The student, from Somersham, had casually mentioned he had musical ambitions to his personal progress tutor at the college Julie Evans. 

She then got in touch with Claire Waterson, the operations manager at Edmunds in Bury St Edmunds, and an audition for Robert was hastily arranged. 

After "wowing" staff with his prowess on the piano, he was given a job on the spot.

Robert outside the Royal Academy of Music in London - an institution he would love to join

Robert outside the Royal Academy of Music in London - an institution he would love to join - Credit: Photo supplied by Sarah Beevers

Whilst his career in music has only just begun, Robert, who makes his own compositions, has big ambitions. 

He said: “I enjoy wood turning and carpentry, but my ambition is to eventually go to somewhere like the Royal Academy of Music.

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"I have been encouraged with playing the piano by the music departments at Claydon and Debenham High Schools, who allowed me to play during break times, and I am really grateful for that opportunity to practice."

“I want to become a professional musician. I know that it’s more difficult to do that coming from a rural area - but Ed Sheeran has proved it can be done by getting to the top of the charts. If my music doesn’t work out, I have the carpentry to fall back on.” 

Robert has landed a job playing the piano at the Edmunds Restaurant

Robert has landed a job playing the piano at the Edmunds Restaurant - Credit: West Suffolk College

Claire said: "This is such a lovely story and we feel honoured to have Robert as our resident.  

"The piano he plays on was given to us by one of our governors (Richard Bridgeman) who donated three quarters of the amount thanks to a fundraising campaign and dinner - and the rest was donated by my husband (Matt Waterson).  

“It’s great that the piano is now regularly graced by such a talented pianist.” 

Robert at West Suffolk College with one of the carpentry pieces he is creating

Robert at West Suffolk College with one of the carpentry pieces he is creating - Credit: West Suffolk College

Julie added: "We are delighted to have Robert in our ranks. He is a talented carpenter and a brilliant musician."

Robert’s mother Sarah Beevers said: "I’m exceedingly proud of Robert. I’ve been told he has the ability to become a professional musician.  

“Playing the piano and wood turning have been a great release for him during lockdown and being able to perform at Edmunds has been the highlight of his time at the college so far.  

“Who knows, Edmunds today, the Royal Albert Hall tomorrow.”