Heyford Singers – February 2019

Its that rather gloomy ‘hibernating” time of year, when our indoor companions are memories of Christmas festivities, family gatherings and the long hot summer days of 2018. As I write this, members of Heyford Singers are still enjoying their winter break, but preparing to return to rehearsals for the spring concert (May 10th and 11th). I thought I would therefore take this opportunity to write about another side of Heyford Singers – the incredible amount that has been raised and donated to various charities over the years. Following the recent Christmas concert we sent two cheques of over £225.00 to The Brain Tumour Charity and New Life the Charity for Disabled Children, a not inconsiderable sum!

This is how it works, and has done since the choir was formed seventeen years ago in 2002; during rehearsals choir members put their pennies and pounds into a sealed box which is opened a couple of weeks before the concert, and counted. This money is used to purchase all the raffle prizes for both concert evenings, with the occasional top up from funds if necessary! Meanwhile choir members offer suggestion for charities that are special to them, or that relate to local or national issues. We each vote for our two preferences. The money taken during the concerts from the sale of raffle tickets is divided between the two chosen recipients. The recent Christmas concert charities I have already mentioned above, in 2017 we donated to Medical Detection Dogs and The Carers Trust, in 2016 to Live at Home and Reach For Health, in 2015 to Tommy’s Fund and Dementia UK, and in 2014 to the British Legion and Alzheimer’s Society. Donations in earlier years have gone to such organisations as Special Baby Care unit, Northampton General Hospital, SHAME, East of England Air Ambulance, Meningitis UK, Singing For The Brain, and there are many, many more worthy recipients that I could list! We are understandably very proud of having been able to support so many wonderful charitable causes over the years!

The spring concert is slightly different in that Heyford Singers made a decision, when first formed, to annually support both the local Parish and Baptist church. This as also by way of a thank you for allowing us to perform our concerts in St Peter and St Paul Church (before the choir became too large in numbers), and for the good neighbourliness and use of equipment by the Baptist Church. This has continued to this day and each May we are proud to help and support the churches in our local community.

There are also other instances when Heyford Singers feel privileged to support charities and organisations. Whenever one of our fellow singers dies, or a close family member, we always donate to the family’s chosen charity. David Smith had been so well cared for in his last few months that a donation, in his memory, to the Emergency Assessment Bay of Talbot Butler Ward, was most fitting. Bob Wilson’s tireless commitment (with Alwyne) towards Northampton Live at Home scheme, enabling older people to stay living independently in their own homes for as long as possible, with the best possible quality of life, was a very special recipient from the choir. I could continue ….

As a choir, of mixed ages, lifestyles, experiences, even where we live and work, we delight not only in coming together to sing and enjoy music, but in so doing, raising some pennies to ultimately help those less fortunate than ourselves. To date we have raised and donated over £14,000 !

As the song says ………

Love is something if you give it away,
Give it away, give it away.
Love is something if you give it away,
You end up having more.


If you would like to find out more, visit the Heyford Singers page or our website:


 alternatively come along to one of our rehearsals in Nether Heyford Village Hall.


Jill Langrish

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