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16th-17th September 2023


WCOCA is delighted to announce that we will be holding a reunion event on 16th-17th September. We will meet at Wakefield Cathedral after lunch on Saturday 16th for a rehearsal for evensong and a chance to catch up and share memories. The choristers, youth choir and lay clerks of the current cathedral choir will then join us for evensong. We extend this invitation to sing evensong to your families too, and in due course will be looking for OCs to become involved in other parts of the service. Music for the service will be voted on by the OC community to ensure that the music you get to sing is the music you like. Following the service, the Cathedral Choir will give a short, informal, recital to give us the opportunity to hear what they sound like now, and refreshments will be served. We will then move to a bar for some drinks and food to allow time to socialise in a relaxed atmosphere.

The Sunday morning will then give another opportunity to hear the Cathedral Choir sing, and a final chance to catch up during this event.



Our aim is to ensure that all of the event hosted at the Cathedral will be free of charge to attend. Following this, there will be a charge for food and venue hire when we move to another setting. Whilst we don’t yet have a final cost, it is expected to be in the region of £20-£25, plus ordering your own drinks.  We are also looking into ways of keeping hotel costs down.


During the summer months, the Committee thought it would good to find out the views of Old Choristers regarding the Association and its direction.  Many thanks must be given to Luke Marsh-Muir and Reuben Vasey-Saunders for their work not only in setting the up the questionnaire but also for their analysis which was shared with fellow Old Choristers at the Association's AGM.  

In the September 2022 newsletter, Luke thanked everyone for their responses:

“We were delighted to have so many interesting responses! Having now held our committee meeting, I would like to share with you our findings and how we intend to use these going forwards.

From these responses, it is clear that as OCs it is very important for you to have the opportunity to sing at WCOCA events. It also indicated that a less formal event would be of interest. Many of you also suggested that events would be easier to attend at different timings, so we are looking at organising events at different times of year and different days of the week. We shall also endeavour to help you connect with OCs from your time in the choir so that attending an event will enable you to meet old friends.

We will continue to run our Facebook group and we hope to broaden our use of it so that those of you who have moved away from the area can still feel involved.

We have some big ideas about events we plan to run next year, and we hope you will be as excited for these as we are. We shall be discussing this further at our AGM on Tuesday 8th November. At this meeting we shall also discuss how best to run the Association for you. It would be great to see as many of you there as possible to share your thoughts. If anyone has anything they’d like to share in the meeting but can’t attend, feel free to get in touch.”



ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING: Tuesday, 8th November 2022

The meeting was held on Zoom and allowed Old Choristers from around the country to attend from the comfort of their own homes.   The Dean was unable to be present so the meeting was chaired by the Precentor.  Following the election of offiers and the committee, a presentation featuring the findings of the Old Choristers' Questionnaire was led by Luke Marsh-Muir.  There were also contributions from James, Bowstead, the Assistant Director of Music and tow choristers who spoke about their life as choristers in 2022.  It was a very interesting meeting.  

At the meeting, John North explained that he did not wish to stand for re-election.  Luke Marsh-Muir was elected in his place.  Below is the letter he sent out to Old Choristers:

"Dear Friends,

For those Old Choristers not present at the AGM of the Association onTuesday evening, I thought I ought to inform you that I have been able to step down from my role as Chair.  I am very pleased to inform you that Luke Marsh-Muir has taken my place.  I am sure the Association will be in safe hands. As well as being a member of the Committee, Luke has been very active in setting up the Association's Facebook page and, along with Reuben Vasey-Saunders, creating the recent questionnaire followed by an analysis of the results.    I hope you will give Luke the support you have given me as the Association moves forward.


I shall continue to serve on the Committee.  Having been on the Committee since 1986, I have held the position of Secretary for ten years and been Chair on two occasions, previously for five years and until Tuesday for the last ten years.  I thoroughly enjoyed the roles I have held and the support and friendship you have given me and look forward to continue meeting you all at future events. 

Best wishes,


COMMITTEE 2022-2023

Chair: Luke Marsh-Muir

Minuting Secretary: Neil Hopwood

Treasurer: Andrew Revans


Rob Barraclough, Rachel Bennett, David Dean, Steve Gledhill, James Holt, John North and Reuben Vasey-Saunders


Clergy Representative: Canon Dr Jayson Rhodes 

Ex-Officio: Dr Ed Jones and James Bowstead



ABOVE: The first meeting of the Association, held in the Chapter House in 1966.  Standing: Nicholas Webb (Precentor) and Canon Norris Pare (Provost) Front Row from the left: Dr Percy Saunders (Organist & Choirmaster), John Holt and Bill Brotherton (both great supporters of the Assoication).

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