Press Release

10 November 2011

Next week will mark World Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Day, and the University's Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Music, Arts and Health is inviting people to help celebrate by joining them in a singing event for people with COPD.

The Centre is currently running a major research project, in collaboration with the Eastern and Coastal Kent Community Health NHS Trust, on the potential value of singing for people affected by this condition. The study, funded by the Dunhill Medical Trust, has recruited over 100 patients from across East Kent to join six groups in Whitstable, Ramsgate, Deal, Dover, Canterbury and Ashford.

Professor Stephen Clift, Chief Investigator of the research project said: “Our project on singing and COPD is the world’s first study to look at the potential value of community singing, and the positive effects it can have for people affected by this very serious lung condition. 

“We are delighted that University Centre Folkestone will host the first event in the project, bringing together over 100 people with COPD to sing and to mark World COPD Day this year. Come along and be amazed at the wonderful sound we will be making!”

The celebration event will bring together group members in a ‘big sing’ celebration event to raise awareness of COPD. The singing will be lead by Sonia Page, a nurse specialist in respiratory care who is also a musician and choral leader.

The world wide day is aimed to help to raise an awareness and understanding of COPD and advocate for better care for patients. In 2004, 64 million people had the illness and the World Health Organisation predicts that COPD will become the third leading cause of death worldwide by 2030. Key risk factors for COPD are tobacco smoking, indoor and outdoor air pollution, and exposure to occupational dusts and chemicals.

Organized by the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD), the Day is marked by activities implemented by health care professionals and patient groups throughout the world, including the event taking place in Folkestone.

World COPD Day ‘Singing for Breathing’ will be held at UCF, 11am-12.30pm, Saturday, 19 November, 2011.

For further details and to book a place at the event, please contact Isobel Salisbury on 01303 220870

Notes to Editor

Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health

The Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health is internationally recognised for its commitment to researching the potential value of music, and other participative arts activities, in the promotion of well-being and health of individuals and communities.

The Folkestone-based Centre has recently completed a systematic review of research on singing and health, conducted a cross-national survey of choral singers in Australia, England and Germany, and undertaken a formative evaluation of the 'Silver Song Club Project' run by Sing For Your Life Ltd.

Currently, the Centre is undertaking further research on singing for the well-being and health of older people, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease patients and people with enduring health problems.

Canterbury Christ Church University

Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services. With nearly 20,000 students, and five campuses across Kent, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional expertise.

  • In 2010 the Faculty of Education received ‘outstanding’ grades in its Ofsted report for primary, secondary and post-compulsory programmes, together with its employment-based routes into teaching. The University’s primary provision has the unique record of having been awarded the highest Ofsted grades in all inspections since 1996.
  • 94 % of our recent graduates gain employment or are in further study in the first six months after graduating (2009/10 DLHE survey).
  • Along with over a thousand undergraduate, postgraduate and professional training courses on offer, we are also home to world-leading and internationally recognised research in Education, History, Music and Sports Related Studies.
  • Canterbury Christ Church University was founded in 1962 by the Church of England as a teacher training college.


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Last edited: 14/12/2018 22:14:00