Mark and Pat were honoured by the Royal Academy of Music on 11th May 2015 with an "Associateship" (ARAM). This award is ratified by the Academy’s governing body and presented to former students who have made a significant contribution to the music profession. In Mark and Pat's case, this was specifically for the creation and successful growth of Spartan Press.
- Mark and Pat fell in love at the Academy. They married pronto, and set up "musical shop" together in Oxford.
- The next 10 years were a frenzied web of freelance playing, conducting, composing, arranging and teaching, which provided a sort of "subconscious apprenticeship", if you will, for what was to follow.
- during this time, Pat toured the country distinguishing herself as one of the Central Band of the Royal Air Force's first ever women. To corrupt AA Milne's quote:- "Alice WAS the guard at Buckingham Palace!".
- Meanwhile, Mark stayed at home, brewing beer, breeding dogs, war gaming and learning how to program a computer!
- 24 years ago this year, the couple founded the music publishing company Spartan Press Music Publishers Ltd, initially as a self publishing outfit to give Mark's compositions more exposure, but the venture has gently grown and grown...
- Spartan now publish the works of over 250 other composers, arrangers and editors, selling worldwide through a network of dealers and distributors.
- 15 years ago, with bergeoning family and various dogs, the Goddards relocated the whole shebang to a remote hunting lodge in the Scottish Highlands called Strathmashie House (every composer's dream)!
- The company has diversified throughout its corporate life, from pioneering musical typesetting (pre Sibelius days of course), short run music printing (using a digital press), the distribution of other small, likeminded music publishers, and more recently, to providing all this experience through the medium of the Internet:- a web services provider for music retailers, composers and publishers called Highlandhost.net
- 7 years ago, Spartan entered the world of music retail with the purchase of the string music specialist mail order suppliers Fuller Music, which is now based, alongside the publishing company, in a new wing built at Strathmashie for the purpose.