Trust News

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June 2, 2024

Royal Visit to Newcastle Cathedral

Read the latest news from Cathedral Music Trust

Along with Future Leader, Victoria Eyre, I was privileged to attend Newcastle Cathedral recently on the day of the visit of Their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester.  Although it was a very wet and windy day outside, the atmosphere within the Cathedral was happy and welcoming.  The visit included a short, guided tour of the Cathedral, focusing in particular on the Ledger Stones, The ‘Story Chair’, the Danish Memorial window and the Cathedral’s focus on musical and social outreach.

Her Royal Highness the Duchess came to the Quire to chat with Victoria and myself about the work of Cathedral Music Trust and the value of being a chorister, and to chat with two teachers from Wingrove Primary School, who are involved in the Cathedral’s musical outreach as part of the National Schools Singing Programme.  The Duchess was very keen to learn more about the different choirs which sing for services at the Cathedral, including the Cathedral Choir, ‘Cambiata Voices’, ‘Choristarters’, the Cathedral Consort and the Schola Cantorum.  Our discussions also highlighted the immense value of the musical outreach programme.

Following the visit to the Cathedral, we all moved to Café 16 for tea, and Revd Canon Peter Dobson talked about the Social Outreach work which the Cathedral has been carrying out. He introduced a short film explaining the work being done for the homeless, for refugees, and for other disadvantaged people in the area.  Following the film, the Cathedral Choir, led by Director of Music, Ian Roberts, sang a beautiful piece entitled Ubi Caritas, composed by Assistant Director of Music, Kris Thomsett.  Her Royal Highness then spent quite some time chatting with the Choir members and particularly the choristers, before their visit ended.

Rosemary Downey, Regional Coordinator for the North and West of England and Wales.