Covid-19: RCO Response & Support for Organists

From March 2020, the Royal College of Organists introduced a series of initiatives to support all organists through the Covid-19 pandemic.

These included free and improved access to educational resources, online tuition, and regular information and updates. You will find a summary below of many of these initiatives, and more details throughout the website in our sections on Accreditation, Learning and Professional Support.


Throughout the pandemic the College worked with its partners to encourage the Government and other bodies to recognise and respond to the unique challenges facing organists and choral directors, including the loss of livelihood, restrictions on their access to instruments in churches and public buildings, continued restrictions on singing and public performance, and the wider devastating impact that Covid-19 had on church, choral and live music throughout the UK and indeed the world.

Online Resources

The College published many new online resources throughout 2020 and 2021, including webinars and films to replace College events which were cancelled. We also published the popular Learning During Lockdown series featuring suggestions and signposting for organists unable to practice or perform during the restrictions.

All of this content remains available to read on our online content hub iRCO Click here for information (member or free guest account required to access). While some of the content and Learning During Lockdown suggestions are no longer free for non-members, everything remains available for purchase.

Many films have also been published on our YouTube channel including the A-Z of the Organ Series and April 2021's The Organ Show.

Communication & Updates

As well as providing full access to the wealth of learning content in iRCO, and setting up new online tuition, we also sought to provide regular information, learning suggestions and practical advice which organists might find useful during this difficult time.

RCO e-Diary, an email bulletin which normally carries a monthly digest of events news from the College and its partners, was repurposed throughout the pandemic and is currently sent to everyone on our mailing list (members and non-members alike).

If you do not currently receive RCO e-Diary, we would encourage you to sign up for free at

We also continue to publish updates on both our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Events & Tuition

While all RCO courses, classes and events were initially cancelled or postponed, the College team worked hard to move the material from these courses online, in the form of webinars and tailored online events. You can find details of the latest webinars and online events on our Events Listings page , along with the physical events that have now resumed.

RCO Accreditation

With the publication of interim regulations allowing for audio-visual and written submissions, the College continued to hold its diploma examination sessions throughout the pandemic.

Meanwhile, it remained business as usual for the Certificate of Accredited Membership (CAM), with assessments available through audio-visual submission at all three stages.

Visit the Accreditation pages of this website for the latest details on examination sessions and entry.