McFly’s Danny Jones Goes Back to his Bolton School to Help Encourage Other Young Musicians and Artists

6 June 2017

McFly’s Danny Jones Inspires Students at his old Secondary School

The singer, songwriter, producer and now mentor Danny Jones went back to his old school, Thornleigh Salesian College, to help encourage the next generation in their ambitions through sharing his experiences so far in his career. Danny spoke to 250 students, years 7-9, about his lessons learned on resilience, hard work and finding support in those around him along the way.

As a member of McFly and now a mentor and coach on The Voice Kids, Danny has started sharing his insights with young people to help encourage them in their potential, and to not feel limited by their surroundings especially if they are passionate about making a career in music or the arts. Danny’s talk highlighted some of the themes of our Creativity, Arts and Culture in State Schools campaign which saw the top arts and culture figures speak to students to help encourage, demystify and demonstrate the benefits of the arts subjects for all students.

VIDEO: Click to hear from Danny on why he’s giving his time to schools

“I am delighted to be working with Speakers for Schools. I think it’s imperative that those of us who have had success in the industry give back to young people. One of the most powerful ways we can do this is by directly sharing the lessons we have learned and supporting their ambitions. By sharing how my journey unfolded I hope I can inspire other young people to be bold in pursuing their own path, whether it be in music or otherwise – and not to worry about failure or getting it wrong. That’s part of the journey.” – Danny Jones 


We are absolutely delighted to welcome Danny back to Thornleigh Salesian College. We are extremely proud of all that he has achieved since leaving here in 2002. We have very fond memories of him being involved in our school productions and shows. We are very much looking forward to him having the opportunity to share his experiences with our current students and allowing them insight into his successful career. We are committed to encouraging all our young people to foster their creative talents and are sure that Danny will really inspire them to follow their dreams and to be resilient when faced with the challenges that the world throws at them.” –Mrs Alison Burrowes, Headteacher of Thornleigh Salesian College

Danny Jones’ Open Letter in Huffington Post

In an open letter released the 2nd May 2017 Danny has called for schools, parents and leaders to support arts and music in state schools through showing their young people support in these career paths, as it is an integral part seeing the next generation as well as British culture thrive.

Danny Jones is best known for being one-quarter of the multiplatinum British pop rock group McFly, but the Bolton-born artist has also established himself as one of today’s premiere songwriters and producers. Jones’ genre-bending style incorporates elements of dance and hip-hop into the more traditional guitar-heavy pop rock sound that made him famous, and he has collaborated over the years with a wide range of artists that includes Busted, Taio Cruz, and One Direction, whose members credit McFly as a major influence in their development as artists. Beginning in Summer 2017, Jones will serve as a coach on the inaugural season of The Voice Kids UK, drawing on his versatile talents and years of experience in the music industry to help mentor a new generation of up-and-coming young artists.


The talk was followed by a workshop with GCSE Music students, helping them perfect their performance of ‘Forever Young’ by Bob Dylan—the same song he performed in Year 11.


Andrew Law, Global Chairman and CEO of Caxton Associate and Chairman of Speakers for Schools has said:

“It is fantastic to see such a talented, successful figure going home to the North to help encourage other local young people to raise their aspirations and ambitions. As a Mancunian I can say these are the types of conversations that first-hand help a student see their own potential differently; hearing directly from someone who has made that journey themselves. We are thrilled Danny has teamed up with Speakers for Schools to do this.”


Robert Peston, ITV Political Editor and Founder of Speakers for Schools has said:

“It is wonderful that Danny is giving practical advice to young people about how they can achieve their dreams and – importantly – make a living!”

Our thanks to Thornleigh Salesian College for being such fantastic hosts and of course to Danny Jones for inspiring the next generation!