Monthly Archives: February 2024

Choir sings at Memorial Service to Andrew Merton Jones at Lambourn

The Choir was privileged, humbled and proud to be invited by Helen Pipe to sing at the Memorial Service of her brother Andrew Merton Jones at St Michael and All Angels Church in Lambourn, Berkshire on 15th February 2024.

Andrew was the son of the late Colin Jones, a former chorister who served over 50 years in the choir. Andrew had a great love of horses and as a young man moved to Lambourn to become a stable hand in Lambourn where he lived the rest of his life.

The Memorial Service, presided over by Revd. Julie Mintern and its content were arranged by Andrew himself and he was keen to revive memories of listening to the choir with his father and he specifically asked that the choir sings ‘My Grandfather’s Clock’ conducted by David Gould and ‘Eli Jenkins’ Prayer’ from Under Milk Wood conducted by Shirley Anne James and accompanied on the church organ by John Nicholson. Both pieces were enthusiastically received and appreciated by a full church in attendance.

In the congregation were Andrew’s sister Helen Pipe and his mother Margaret. Helen gave a fitting and moving tribute to her brother by relaying memories of their childhood together. Hymns included ‘Morning has Broken’, ‘Blaenwern – Love Divine, all loves excelling ‘ and ‘Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer’ to the tune Cwm Rhondda, well know to all Welsh Male Choir.

In the words of Revd Julie Mintern the memorial arrangements brought together three families, Andrew’s own in Caldicot, his Lambourn family and the community family of Caldicot represented by Caldicot Male Voice Choir.

Following the service, the choir retired to the George Inn opposite the church to a warm welcome and traditional afterglow singing enjoyed by all who took part.

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Choir Saddened by the Loss of Harry Giblin ‘H’.

Harry shares a laugh with Wynne Evans and Alex Jones at Caldicot Castle in 2016

The Choir was deeply saddened to learn from his partner, Hazel that much loved and respected chorister Harry Giblin, known affectionately as ‘H’ passed away at the University Hospital of Wales Cardiff in the morning of Monday 5th February 2024 at the age of 79.

The choir paid a tribute to Harry with a minute’s silence and the singing of ‘Gwahoddiad’ at practice on Monday.

It was at the concert in Catbrook 6 years ago that he met his partner Hazel to later form a partnership that lasted until his death. Our thoughts and condolences go out to Hazel, his daughter Victoria and both Harry and Hazel’s families and friends at this very sad time.

Harry had been struggling with illness for some time but nevertheless regularly attended practice at the Choir Hall and at concerts; his last, alongside Hazel, was singing Christmas Carols with the choir at The White Hart Inn in Llangybi on December 15th and at the Two Rivers Hotel, Chepstow on December 21st shortly before his admission to the Grange Hospital.

Born in Pillgwenlly, Newport in wartime 1944, Harry led a full and active life including working as a gantry crane driver at the giant Llanwern steelworks before moving on to social work where, following his attainment of University degrees in Social work he rose to a prominent management position providing for the needs of the elderly, particularly in hospital and care homes.

In his youth he was a Rugby player in Newport and he was keen to reminisce his days as a player alongside the likes of International players such as Brian Price, Stuart Watkins, David Watkins of Newport and Wales fame in the sixties and seventies. His Rugby interest continued when he became coach of Caldicot’s Junior Rugby team.

Harry joined the choir in 2015 as a baritone and his first concert was at St. Peter’s Church, Oakford in Devon alongside new choristers Liam Evans, Sam Atkins and Rob Baldwin. Proudly, Harry hardly ever missed a concert or practice since he joined and loved every bit of being in the choir, adding in his words, much joy and happiness to his life.

Harry was a true gentleman and much loved by all the choir. With a cheeky grin, twinkling, mischievous eyes he was always willing to share a joke, pass on an anecdote from his life and partake of a dram or two with his fellow basses and baritones.

He will be sorely missed by everyone who knew him. Rest in Peace dear friend. Gorffws mewn heddwch.

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