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During the first week of June 2010, Colin Smith (a former organist and choirmaster at St Nicolasí) brought a choir from his church in Norway to visit Cheltenham.

The choir was started in 1982 by one of Colinís predecessors and was built up on Anglican lines with choir members in cassock and surplice. The choir took many ideas from English liturgy and choir tradition, not least regular evensong which the choir continues to sing every month, practically the only choir in Norway to do so. They also sing an annual ĎNine lessons and carolsí service at Christmas. Otherwise the choir sings regularly at the services at Gamle Aker church which is the only surviving medieval church in the city (and indeed the oldest building of any sort in Oslo). They have had many trips abroad, and have sung in St Peterís Rome and in St Petersburg.

On Friday 4th June at 5.30pm the choir sang Evensong in Gloucester Cathedral and then on Saturday 5th June at 6pm they sang Evensong in St Maryís church in Prestbury. They were also present for the Sung Eucharist in St Nicolasí on Sunday 6th June at 9.30am.  The anthem on this occasion was For the Beauty of the Earth by John Rutter.

Pictured above are the Gamle Aker church choir (in red cassocks) with Colin Smith (in black); Fr Michael Cozens (in green chasuble) and some of the choir of St Nicolas' church (in blue)

Download a high resolution version of the photograph  (587 KB)


During the Saturday evening the choir was invited to Allan and Daphne Philpot's home for a BBQ and party:

Whilst some were eating Simon tried to teach our visitors how to play the English game of cricket.
It involves a lot of people standing around watching while one person tries to hit a ball with a bat.

In the morning we were all in church early to have a short rehearsal:

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The Parochial Church Council of the Ecclesiastical Parish of St Mary and St Nicolas Prestbury Cheltenham - Registered Charity No 1130933

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Last modified: 02 March 2017