Estranged Students

At Leeds Conservatoire, we are committed to supporting students who are estranged. We want you to get the best out of your course, fulfil your potential, and enjoy your conservatoire experience.

Estranged students are young people studying without the support of a family network, usually due to a long-term breakdown in the relationship with their parents or guardians. You may be eligible for additional support if you are under 25 and if any of the following apply to your circumstances:

  • You have had no communicative relationship with your parents/guardians for at least 6 months and this situation is not likely to change.
  • You have been homeless or ‘sofa surfing’.
  • You have been in foster or local authority care but are not classed as a Care Leaver.
  • You are assessed as independent by Student Finance because you are estranged from your parents.
  • Both of your parents have passed away and you have no alternative family support in place.

From the moment you apply to join us at Leeds Conservatoire, right through to your graduation and beyond there's lots of support on offer to help you get the most out of your experience.

At Leeds Conservatoire we recognise that students who are estranged from their families may need additional support in lieu of a family network or assistance from their local authority.

You can contact us for support as early as you would like, even before you apply to our conservatoire. We can talk to you about conservatoire life and answer any questions you might have. Our dedicated estranged student contact is Bethany Milner.

We provide advice and support to estranged students on how to apply for any available funding and associated benefits. If you would like to talk to our student funding team, please contact

We will also cover the cost of gown hire at Graduation for our estranged students.

You can visit our Fees and Funding page for more information.

An accommodation start-up grant worth £150 for essential items, is available to applicants starting their course in September 2023, who have been receiving benefits, are care leavers, or are estranged from their family. Applications for students starting in September 2023 are now open.

Within the Health and Wellbeing Team, we provide a range of free and confidential services to help with any practical, emotional, or mental health conditions that you might be experiencing, which are impacting upon your studies or student life.

If you are a current or prospective student and would like to discuss any specific support needs or concerns about your wellbeing please don’t hesitate to get in touch at

Q. I’m a current student and have recently become estranged from my parents – what do I do?

If you have recently become estranged, please do get in touch with our dedicated contact Bethany. She can discuss your circumstances with you and talk through the next steps. 

Q. I’m estranged but Student Finance says I’m not eligible for support yet.

Please do still get in touch with us – even if you are not receiving full financial support from Student Finance, our student funding team may still be able to help get your funding sorted.

Leeds Conservatoire is delighted to sign the Stand Alone Pledge, a commitment to recognise and strengthen our support for students who are estranged from their families.

StandAlone Pledge logo

Dedicated Estranged Student Contact

Bethany Milner

Student Wellbeing Adviser (Access and Participation)

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