Situation Vacant: Organist and Choir Director

St Peter & St Paul’s Church, Flitwick, Bedfordshire (3 miles from M1 Junction 12)

is seeking to appoint an enthusiastic and competent Organist and Choir Director to continue
and develop its well-established musical tradition

This thriving and inclusive parish church offers:
– a worshipping community that values and enjoys a broad range of Church music
– a faithful and committed robed choir of adults and young people which sings a dedicated choir piece each week
– a growing library of music ranging from simple chants to full SATB anthems
– a one manual, renovated Henry Jones organ with full pedal board

A suitable candidate will:
– play for the Sung Parish Eucharist on Sunday mornings at 10.30am (not the first Sunday of the month), on the main Feast Days of the year and for other occasional services, etc.
– conduct weekly choir practices (Friday evenings, term-time only) and give appropriate training

This post is available from 1 September, 2018 or as soon as possible thereafter

The church is affiliated to the RSCM and remuneration will be based on its guidelines with additional fees available for occasional offices

For further information or to express your interest in this position, please contact:
The Revd Lucy Davis
01525 712369

RSCM London Area: Come and Sing with Bob Chilcott

Saturday 19th May 2018, 10:30 – 16:30
Regent Hall, 275 Oxford Street, London W1C 2DJ
A fabulous opportunity to experience an inspiring day of singing in Central London with Bob Chilcott.

Further details and a booking form on the RSCM London Area website:

West Gallery Workshop and Georgian Evensong

RSCM Essex and East London Area
Celebrating Oak Apple Day!

West Gallery Workshop and Georgian Evensong  – Workshop 3 p.m. Evensong 6 p.m.

Sunday, 20th May, 2018

St. Mary’s Church, Wanstead E11 2LN

A seasonal celebratory workshop for singers and musicians with Dr Francis Roads musical director of the London Gallery Quire in one of the finest Georgian Churches in England, featuring West Gallery Music, followed by a Georgian Evensong led by the Rev Gordon Giles a regular contributor to Church Music Quarterly.
‘West Gallery’ music is the music of English (and American) churches and chapels in the Georgian period, 1700-1850. This music never completely died out: in the USA, the ‘Shapenote’ tradition is still flourishing, and in Britain some congregations and carol parties have kept the music going until the revival of recent years. In the 18th century, very few country churches had an organ, and for music they depended on the vocal efforts of the parish clerk and congregation, who sang psalms in the metrical paraphrases of the Old Version (1562) or New Version (1696). From about 1670 on, companies of singers were formed, and the first music specially composed for such ‘country choirs’ appeared about 1700. Village singers learnt to sing ‘by note’ in harmony, and adopted a vigorous style of singing, often varying the point at which the voices entered, known as ‘fuguing’. From about 1740, accompanying instruments began to be used, and by 1800 there were groups of competent singers and musicians in many churches. Sometimes the musicians, especially string players, played for dances on Saturday as well as for psalms and anthems on Sunday: they brought the same vernacular approach to both kinds of music. Not only the choir in church, but also the congregation in chapel, developed the art of singing in harmony. The singers and musicians were often placed at the west end of the church, in a raised ‘singing seat’ or a gallery: hence the term ‘West Gallery music’, which was devised by Thomas Hardy to refer to the sturdily independent character of the old church bands. In the end, as Hardy observed, changes of various kinds in church and village life and practice led to the demise of the singers as an independent force in English country churches: the galleries and singing seats were destroyed, the instruments were disposed of, and the manuscript music books lost. The churches came to be dominated by a harmonium or an organ, and the people sang in regimented fashion from Hymns Ancient & Modern.
Oak Apple Day was passed into law in 1660 as a public holiday on 29th May, King Charles II birthday, as a Day of Thanksgiving for the Restoration of the Monarchy and prayers for the occasion were published in the Book of Common Prayer. The public holiday was abolished in 1859 but the day is still celebrated in some towns
Music is available to download from
For bookings (£6) and further information contact:
Shirley Timmins, 156 Warley Hill, Brentwood CM14 5HF, or 01277 233302 (answerphone)

'Furthest from the Sea' Events in Luton

FFTS Events are looking for music, dance and variety artists to perform in St Georges Square, Luton from 12pm till 4pm on the following dates –

Saturday 14th April
Saturday 12th May
Saturday 14th July

Anyone who is interested in taking part should contact

Want to Sing Regularly at St Albans Cathedral?

abbeyHere’s an opportunity to sing regularly at St Albans Cathedral.

The Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Alban PARISH SINGERS is a voluntary, auditioned, adult choir who sing at most of the 9.30 Parish Eucharist Services throughout the year, as well as at Carols on the Hour at Christmas and occasional evensongs. We sing a variety of music, but mostly traditional motets. Prospective members who are competent singers and sight readers are very welcome to come along and try us out prior to audition.

Rehearsals are in the Cathedral Song School on Wednesday evenings 8-9.15pm every two to three weeks, followed by a quick drink in the White Hart opposite.

The choir is very friendly and auditions, with Andrew Lucas – Master of the Music – are not onerous. Please contact the Cathedral Music Secretary, Lizzie, on 01727 890245 or by email:


Calling Young Organists

The Parish Church of St Peter and St Paul, Olney is delighted to introduce an Organ Scholar Programme aimed at existing keyboard players who are interested in learning to play the organ as part of worship in church. The scheme will be particularly beneficial to people who have passed grade five on the piano, or who are at that standard.

For more information on the Olney Organ Scholar Programme, see this PDF file.

Sponsor A Pipe in the Harrison & Harrison Organ at St Albans Cathedral

Christopher Muhley – St Albans Cathedral Music Trust

The great organ at St Albans Cathedral was restored and tonally enhanced in 2009 and now is once again fully operational. A major programme of restoration and development by the original builders – Harrison & Harrison of Durham – was initiated in August 2007 when it could be delayed no longer.

For over forty-five years the organ had been used every day for rehearsal, practice, services and performances. Such heavy usage had, however, paid its toll. The mechanism had become worn and unreliable and it became clear that a full refurbishment could be put off no longer.

The programme of work comprised the complete restoration, repair, cleaning and adjustment of the instrument. At the same time some sensitive tonal enhancements consistent with the organ’s essential character were made including the addition of a 32-foot reed.

Through donations to the organ restoration fund and other gifts, the St Albans Cathedral Music Trust has been able to allocate some £690,000 towards the scheme. This enabled the contract to be signed and the work carried out. However the need to close the gap on the total cost of £830,000 is urgent.

One way of helping is through the “Sponsor a Pipe” scheme, which has been launched by the Music Trust. You can sponsor a pipe in memory of a departed friend or relative, in thanksgiving for a special event, as an unusual gift, or simply for yourself. Families, schools and groups can help too by sponsoring a pipe jointly.

A separate brochure (see link to pdf below) explains how you can take part, and what you will receive in return.

Please be generous in your support so we can also celebrate the raising of the full cost.

Further details: Sponsor A Pipe Brochure (PDF file)

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