A FORMER Ilkley Grammar School student is appealing for financial help after beating hundreds of applicants to secure a place at a top London Drama School.

Patrick Campbell, 19, of Burley-in-Wharfedale, is due to start a foundation course in September at the Rose Bruford College - following in the footsteps of actors Gary Oldman and Stephen Graham, who also studied there.

But as no Government loan or financial support is available for drama school foundation course students, the budding star must first raise £6,000 for fees and is appealing for donations via his GoFundMe webpage.

Patrick, who has just won this year’s Best Actor and Best Performance at the Wharfedale Festival was also previously awarded a coveted place at the National Youth Theatre.

The talented teenager, who also sings and dances, has saved enough from casual work to cover accommodation costs but due to the coronavirus pandemic he has not been able to carry on working to pay for the course fees.

Patrick is pledging to set up an acting masterclass for aspiring young performers when he returns from his course. He is planning to share his skills with those who donate and to give advice on how to pursue a dream like his.

He said: “If you have a dream, you’ve got to follow it, however impossible it might seem at times. I’ll do anything I can do to support other young people hoping to get into acting. There’s not very much Government support for the Performing Arts so I’m incredibly grateful to anyone who feels I deserve their help.”

When Patrick was 16 he was awarded a place at The National Youth Theatre, which offers just over 200 places a year from more than 3000 applicants.

He received The Ilkley Playhouse Award in both 2017 and 2019, and has played a number of key roles with Ilkley Amateur Operatic Society.

Visit gf.me/u/yhjt3b or email phccampbell@gmail.com to support Patrick.