Young leaders move on

The Sunday following All Saints Day saw the departure of Stephen Brown, Sam Stollery, Edward Gower and David Barratt, four of our most senior choristers. They have collectively clocked up over twenty years, having joined us between Easter 1995 and September 1996 a formidable achievement, given all of the other demands on time and loyalty placed on young people these days.

More impressive still is the maturity demonstrated by what they believe the choir has taught them. For Sam, it is the wide variety of music he has learned as well as the responsibility of being a Head Chorister. Stephen broadens this point, citing the confidence that singing solos has given him and also what he has learned about looking after younger boys. Ed sums it up nicely in a single word: leadership.

Opinions differed on what they enjoyed most about their time within us, underlining the breadth of the activities we undertake. Christmas, with its services that draw packed congregations, has always been a special time for Stephen. David, on the other hand, enjoyed the summer outings and Thorpe Park, with its log flume, especially came to mind in this respect.

Choir veterans with the Vicar

Ed recalled with fondness our trip last year to the Netherlands and the exciting concert on the Saturday night, preceded by a violent thunderstorm! David did too; for him the game of football in the windswept dunes near where we stayed miles from the coast was a very strange experience. Sam rated the Summer choir holidays as being what he enjoyed most and, interestingly, the three of them who ranked one as favourite chose their first: Worcester (1997) for Sam and Durham (1996) for Ed and Stephen. So what wont they miss? Having to turn up every week was one reply and Getting up early on a Sunday morning was another

A whole new vista of free time now beckons. Homework, however, will surely expand to fill the void, although both Stephen and David are keen to take to their skateboards. Sunday cricket and, more immediately, the footlights beckon for Ed. He is taking the part of sly and cunning in fact oily Sir Russell Fox in a school production of The Canterbury Tales. On whom, we might wonder, is he basing this character..?