The following instruments are currently Out of Stock and therefore unavailable for hire:

Instrument Size / Type
Cello Full Size
Double Bass All Sizes
French Horn All Types
Saxophone All Types
Violin Full Size

Please note that our stock is limited and not likely to change in the foreseeable future. If you still require an instrument, you may wish to consider contacting an alternative supplier, such as Normans Musical Instruments, Howarth London or Dawkes Music


EMS offers comprehensive instrument hire and purchase services for pupils and students living in Ealing or attending Ealing schools.

For pupils starting a new instrument, it makes sense to start with a hired instrument, especially for younger children who might start with scaled-down string instruments and work their way up to the full-size instruments as they grow.

Instrument Hire

EMS hires instruments at the highly subsidised rates shown in the table below. Instruments are hired on a school term basis, the hire charge covering the current school term plus the following holiday period and two weeks into the following term to allow for returns. After this period the hire charge for the following term will fall due.

Payment for instrument hires is by Direct Debit, with payments managed by Ealing Corporate Collections. The hirer completes a Direct Debit Bank Mandate to authorise a payment covering each school term, and this continues until the instrument is returned.

Hiring an Instrument requires two forms to be completed:

Please complete these in advance of your appointment and bring a copy of the Direct Debit mandate with you on the day. You will not be able to hire an instrument without doing so.

Instruments are issued and returned through the Ealing Music Service office in the Dominion Centre in Southall.

Attendance is by appointment only. Please click here to make an appointment.

Instruments for Hire Termly Charge
Termly Charge
Djembe, Tabla, Viola, Violin £22 £23
Cello, Clarinet, Cornet, Flute, Saxophone (Alto), Santoor, Sitar, Trumpet, Trombone £27 £28
Bassoon, Double Bass, French Horn, Oboe £36 £37

Please note that EMS does not hire Guitars, Recorders or Ukuleles as it is cheaper to buy those outright.

For advice on buying a guitar, please see EMS416 Advice on buying a Guitar for Beginners.pdf

Instrument Purchase

Once students are playing a full-size instrument or simply want an instrument of their own, EMS can help students purchase instruments through the government-backed Assisted Instrument Purchase Scheme (AIPS).

AIPS allows for families with children receiving a state education – attending a local authority-run school or academy OR taught by EMS teachers OR participating in an EMS orchestra or ensemble – to purchase instruments and accessories (reeds, rosin, strings, etc.) ‘ex-VAT’. At current rates, this represents a discount of 20% off regular retail list prices.

EMS can also assist with purchases made through a retailer however this must be arranged before you buy the instrument, as effectively EMS buys the instrument on your behalf and you then pay EMS for the instrument the cost of the instrument, ‘ex, VAT’. An administration fee is charged for this.

EMS strongly recommends you speak with your child’s instrument teacher for advice before purchasing an instrument.

Choosing and Caring for your Instrument

Choosing an instrument to learn can be quite daunting. Parents might consider type of instrument (wind, strings, brass, percussion, etc., ) and what type of ensemble – group, band or orchestra – their child might enjoy  playing in (ome instruments are perfectly suited to playing alone; others are at their best when playing as part of a group). However, what is most important is that it is an instrument that excites and stimulates their child, so that practice at home, playing with others and music-making in general is a pleasure  that becomes part of their life. For more advice see Choosing an Instrument

Brass and woodwind instruments have standard sizes however String instruments – Violin, Viola, Cello and Double Bass – come in different sizes.

If you are hiring a stringed instrument, please bring the child with you when you collect the instrument so we can ensure you are offered the right size instrument .

If this is not possible, then you will need to know the length of your child’s outstretched arm from neck to wrist.

As children grow they will need to move on to a larger sized instrument – their instrument teacher will advise on this – at which point hirers can simply return the instrument and exchange it for the next size up. There is no charge for this.

Hirers are required to care for their instruments and return them in the same condition as they were hire.

‘Fair wear and tear’ is allowed for – chips to varnish, worn pads, etc. HOWEVER the hirer is liable for the full cost of any repairs required to enable the instrument to be rehired, and the full cost of replacement if the instrument is lost.

EMS DOES NOT insure instruments on hire; accordingly it is the hirers responsibility to insure the instrument.

The simplest way to insure an instrument is through a home contents or renters insurance policy. We recommend that Hirers check if this is possible (you may need to add the instrument as a named item). Alternatively, companies which offer instrument insurance include: