A MUSICIAN who used the arts to turn his life around has set up a company to help other people in need.

Jamie Cunliffe, 31, of Colchester, has teamed up with friend and fellow musician Luke Hunt to create Community Music Colchester.

The community interest company offers music workshops for the disabled, refugees, young offenders, low income families and elderly people with dementia.

Jamie said his difficult childhood and epilepsy has inspired his new venture.

“I was removed from mainstream school when I was younger,” he said.

“I was in trouble with the law, drugs and X, Y and Z.

“I was in a special school and I never got on with teachers as many young people don’t. I always wanted to help others who had been in trouble.

“I also have epilepsy and wanted to do something to help people with disabilities.

“My step dad Anthony Roberts is part of Colchester Arts Centre and I have always been around arts and music people.”

But Jamie decided he wanted to do something a bit with his qualifications and joined with Luke to create their service which has been a year in the making.

Anyone taking part will get the opportunity to make music and even produce it.

He said: “We offer a range of different music services and some music workshops and music therapy.

“We liaise with lots of other services, the education authorities and we can provide musical workshops in a group or on a one-to-one basis.

“Music is the universal language and something that everyone can relate to. Everyone should have access to it.

“With Government cuts - even in mainstream education - people don’t have access to music like I believe they should.”

To find out more visit communitymusiccolc.wixsite.com/cmccic.

Alternatively call Jamie on 07463780720.