Ulverston sax star Jess Gillam, hot on the heels of her performance at this week’s BAFTA ceremony, has written to the Guardian newspaper calling for music to be made part of the core curriculum in our state schools.

I could not agree with her more. Music, that great leveller and bringer of joy is, as Jess rightly says in her letter, “part of the fabric of society; it sits at the heart of human experience and enriches so many lives”.

I hope education leaders, both in government and within the profession, don’t ignore Jess’s letter. For here is someone who is young, prodigiously talented and diligent, who knows exactly what fulfilment and opportunities music can offer. She also knows that it is not - and should not be - a rarefied part of life available only to the privileged few.

Putting music on the core curriculum would open the doors to a new, rich world for thousands of children who would not ordinarily have access to musical instruments or singing lessons; and no child should be deprived of the chance to learn an instrument because of financial constraints.

Like Jess, I grew up in Ulverston. I was lucky to go to Ulverston Victoria High School - an establishment which promoted music and which, today, has a highly regarded swing band which has put the school on the musical map.

Hopelessly unmusical myself (I tried but gave up the piano, the guitar and the recorder - the latter, much to the relief of anyone unlucky enough to find themselves within a 50-yard radius of me while I was playing), most of my family are enthsiastic amateur pianists, while my husband is too modest to admit that he is a very talented pianist indeed.

All our parents had to find the money to put us through music lessons after school - and they managed it only because such lessons were relatively cheap. Now, I suspect that is not the case; and so music becomes a “middle class” pursuit for children, when it should not.

Back in my UVHS days, those of us not proficient in any instruments could take part in the annual school musical; and just the other evening my best friend and I spent a happy couple of hours singing along to the score of Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic operetta The Gondoliers, in which we and our schoolmates had all performed - an experience which gives us lifelong joyful memories, tinged with sadness because one of that show’s stars, a much-loved and still much-missed boy called Michael, died a few months later.

Jess Gillam has got it absolutely right: music does sit at the heart of human experience - joyful and sad. I fervently hope our leaders take note of her impassioned plea for music for all.