The Heart of England Orchestra was founded in 1999 by Paul Hilliam, its Musical Director and Principal Conductor. It has rapidly gained a reputation in the Midlands for the quality of its performances, acknowledged by both audiences and local press.

The Orchestra promotes its own concerts, works with foreign conductors and well-known soloists, and organises innovative educational work in schools.

In addition the Orchestra is available to accompany choirs and fulfill engagements for music societies and promoters. It has appeared regularly in Derby Cathedral with the Cathedral Choir and the choir of the Queen's Company. In 2003 the Orchestra performed at a Gala Operatic Evening at Buxton Opera House, compared by Brian Kay of BBC Radio 3.

The Heart of England Orchestra is flexible in size. It normally performs as a chamber orchestra but enlarges occasionally, especially for outdoor fireworks concerts.

Since its founding the Orchestra has helped raise thousands of pounds in support of charities such as the Royal British Legion and Cancer Research UK.

A sample of the Orchestra performing is available on DVD and CD.

The Orchestra played superbly The Derby Evening Telegraph (Review of Handel's Messiah, Queen's Company at Derby Cathedral)

A revelation Loughborough Echo