Instrumental Hire

Essex Music Services Instrument Hire Scheme

Instrument Hire Information Sheet

We have a stock of almost 2000 high quality instruments which are available to hire for anyone up to age 21 living or studying in Essex. Our hire rates are competitively priced and we offer most common orchestral instruments in addition to electric guitars and keyboards.

Please note that this service gets busy at the beginning of term and extra time should be allowed for delivery. We do not guarantee availability of instruments or delivery dates. There is a £10 per instrument delivery charge for instruments delivered to schools, however if you would like to collect for free from Essex Music Services at County Hall, Chelmsford, then please call us to arrange a time.

Please click here to apply for an instrument

Due to staff changeover, it is likely that deliveries won’t resume until October 2018. We cannot guarantee that an instrument will be delivered in time for your child’s first lesson. We recommend where possible that parents should collect in person from Essex County Hall, Chelmsford CM1 1QH

For queries, email:

Below is a list of the instruments which are available to hire:

Instrument Deposit Hire (Per Term) 50% Remissions (Per Term)
Flute £30 £30 £15
Oboe £35 £35 £17.50
Clarinet £30 £30 £15
Alto Sax £50 £50 £25
Tenor Sax £60 £60 £30
Bassoon/Mini Bassoon £40 £40 £20
Trumpet/Cornet £30 £30 £15
French Horn £35 £35 £17.50
Tenor Horn £40 £40 £20
Bari/Euphonium £45 £45 £22.50
Trombone (tenor only) £30 £30 £15
Tuba £35 £35 £17.50
Violin (all sizes) £15 £15 £7.50
Viola £15 £15 £7.50
Cello (all sizes) £20 £20 £10
Double Bass (all sizes) £35 £35 £17.50
Guitar (all sizes) £10 £10 £5
Electric/Bass Guitar & Amp £40 £40 £20
Keyboard £20 £20 £10

If you need an instrument not listed above please get in touch, as if we have enough demand we are happy to expand our stock.

Instrument Size Guide

Several instruments are available in a range of sizes to suit children of different ages and height. Listed below are the recommended sizes of instruments for various age groups and heights. These are rough estimates and based on typical sizes for heights for ages. If you have any doubts in sizing please speak with your child’s tutor.


Ideally a player will be able to comfortably hold the end of the violin with the left hand whilst the instrument is in a playing position.

¼ size Ages 6-7

½ size Ages 7-9

¾ size Age 10

Full size Ages 11+


12″ Viola Ages 6-7

13″ Viola Ages 7-9

14″ Viola Ages 9-12

15″ Viola Ages 10-12

16″ Viola Ages 12+


¼ size 3’6″ – 4′ Tall

½ size 4′ – 4’6″ Tall

¾ size 4’6″ – 5′ Tall

Full size 5’+

Double Bass

¼ size Ages 7-9 Years

½ size Ages 9-13 Years

¾ size Ages 13+

Classical Guitar

½ size Ages 5-6

¾ size Ages 7-12

Full size Ages 12+

We also hire smaller models of Bassoons, Trombones, French Horns, and several other instruments. As these are often in different keys, or are more simplified versions of larger instruments, it is always worthwhile checking with a tutor first.