On Thursday 10 September, the whole of the cathedral choir sang its first service together since March 2020.

The lay clerks and choral scholars had returned to the cathedral the previous week, but the choristers had only had their first rehearsal that morning. New procedures have been put into place to help the choir adhere to current social distancing measures, including some changes to the choir’s singing position and the boys singing in school uniform instead of robes.

Geraint Bowen, Director of Music, said: ‘It was a wonderful day for the cathedral when the choir returned to singing after nearly six months away – quite possibly the longest time without choral services since the 1650s – and they have all risen magnificently to the challenge of singing from their new socially-distanced positions in the choir stalls.’

Thursday’s Evensong has been made available as a webcast (click here to listen) and includes the Service in D by Herbert Brewer, former organist of Gloucester Cathedral, and the anthem is View me, Lord by Richard Lloyd, former organist of Hereford Cathedral. The voluntary is the third movement of the Trio Sonata in E minor by J S Bach.

The financial cost of the early return to full choral services has been made possible by the discretionary grant to support the music department that has been made to each cathedral by the Church Commissioners, which in our case amounts to £26,722, which will cover the employment costs of the lay clerks and choral scholars from September to December. The Chapter is very grateful to the Church Commissioners for their generous and timely support of our choral foundation.

As with all acts of public worship, those attending choral services are kindly asked to supply contact details to support with Track & Trace and wear a face covering whilst in the cathedral. To view this week's Music List click here.