To celebrate our 30th anniversary we’re looking back at some of the highlights from over the years.

Today we’re winding the clock back to 2018 to celebrate a wonderful moment in our history: winning the Queen's Award.

The Queen’s Award for Enterprise, which celebrates the UK’s small and medium sized businesses, was established in 1965 and is widely regarded as among the most prestigious business awards in the country. In June 2018 HM the Queen hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace for representatives of the winning companies from 2018's Queens Award Enterprise ceremony.

RSL Founder Norton York and former CEO John Simpson were present at Buckingham Palace where they picked up the Queens Award for Enterprise in International Trade. The 2018 award marked the 52nd anniversary of the scheme, and receiving this award showed how much RSL had accomplished since its inception in 1991. We all felt extremely honoured to be recognised for our contribution to music education, not just here in the UK, but around the globe!

"Since we started Rockschool in 1991 we pioneered pop and rock music education - from our world firsts in establishing guitar, bass and drums grade exams to our vocational qualifications which have been taken by world beating artists and our most recent innovation in music production exams, Rockschool has always led the way in British music education. I am so proud and honoured that our achievements in the past few years in establishing our exams as a global leader in our field in more than 40 countries has been recognised with this Queen's Award. Thank you to our staff and to all the young musicians who have come on this journey with us."

Norton York, Founder & Chairman RSL Awards (Rockschool ltd), June 2018

A presentation ceremony was held at RSL’s Head Office in Teddington by the Lord-Lieutenant of the County as HM The Queen’s representative. Additionally, HM The Queen hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace for representatives of the winning companies on 28th June 2018, with Norton York and John Simpson in attendance on behalf of the company.

We hope you enjoyed this blog! Keep your eyes peeled for more content coming this week to celebrate our 30th anniversary!


About RSL Awards Ltd

In 1991, under the direction of founder Norton York, Rockschool created a unique set of products for a brand-new marketplace: recognised, graded qualifications for contemporary musicians. The traditional instruments performing in a rock band were included in the original graded examinations, Electric guitar, Bass guitar and Drums. After the initial success with these instruments, the company has developed syllabi in Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Piano and Keyboards, Ukulele, Contemporary Music Theory and the world's first Music Production syllabus.

Over recent years the company, based in West London, has developed a full suite of Vocational Qualifications for the creative industries, which are delivered in over 500 schools and colleges, principally in the UK. These sit alongside a program of contemporary dance qualifications, covering three distinct disciplines: musical theatre, jazz and street dance and a new suite of first to market CQ qualifications in Vlogging and Podcasting.

A head office team of 50, and a team of over 150 highly trained and certified global examiners, assessors and moderators help deliver the qualifications across the globe. Rockschool qualifications are recognised and regulated at the highest level by Ofqual, SFA, CCEA, Qualifications Wales and the Department for Education, with all successful level 3 (Grades 6–8) exams being awarded UCAS points, bolstering university applications.