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DAVE GETS HIS MUG

Retiring bass and choir founder member Dave Binge was presented with an engraved pewter tankard at choir rehearsal on May 2.  Dave retired from the choir after a sterling 37 years last November.  The presentation was made by choir master of ceremonies John Ward Turner, to generous applause from choir musical director Richard Hoyle and the assembled choir members.

 

JOHN WARD TURNER WRITES:

David Binge, one of the choir’s longest serving members, retired from the choir this year. David joined in 1975 under the Musical Director and founder David Neil. He was a member of the Bass section although he originally joined the Second Tenors moving down to the Baritones.

David was Choir Secretary for many years retiring from that post in 2000. He is married to Margaret, a great supporter of the choir, who rarely misses any of the concerts; they have two sons John and Paul.

David worked as a computer engineer from the early days and must have witnessed the huge growth and advancement in this field from its infancy to the computerized world we live in today.

During his time with the choir, David has sung under the direction of five different musical directors: the founder David Neil, then Phil Ratcliff who was followed by Ozzie Arnold, then Richard Hoyle when Ozzie moved to South Wales.  Richard Hoyle was followed for a short while by Stephen Hope but then resumed his role as the current musical director.

Although retired from singing, David will still keep in contact with the choir as a social member and he has been made an Honorary Life Patron in recognition of his outstanding support to the choir.

 

JWT presents Dave wiith his tankard

 

 

 
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MANSEL BARNES - 19 April 1929-23 March 2013

Choir members turned out in force to say farewell to Mansel Barnes at St John’s, Old Coulsdon, on Monday April 8.


Mansel, who died peacefully in his sleep on March 23 at the age of 83, was a top tenor with the CMVC for twelve years, delighting members with his sense of fun and occasional irreverence.  The choir sang three pieces in his memory at his funeral: The Rose, My Lord What a Morning, and Benedictus.

During the hour-long service, tributes were paid to Mansel by Ian Martin of Purley John Fisher Rugby Club and Mansel’s son Philip.  Ian spoke of Mansel’s enthusiasm, commitment and above all his passion for Welsh rugby – relishing Wales’ 30-3 victory over England a few days before he died.

Philip recalled his father’s career which included national service with the RAF and  working as an engineer and as teacher, together with his love for his children and grandchildren.   “He was my hero,” Philip said.

Mansel’s wife Mary and his daughter Veronica, both well known to choir members, were in attendance.  Veronica played the piano at the service along with her sister Ruth who played the cello.   Mansel's sister Priscilla read nine verses from the Book of Romans. 

Veronica said afterwards that she was pleased and moved that so many choir members had come to sing for her father.  "The choir sang wonderfully," Veronica said.  "You all did Dad proud." 

A full obituary of Mansel will appear on the website shortly.


Tribute to Mansel - the Welsh grandfather - at St John's



 
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PETE RIDES AGAIN!

This time it’s the big one!   Three years ago, choir bass Pete Smith impressed us all by cycling 280 miles from London to Paris in three days – raising £7,245 for the Royal Marsden Hospital’s cancer charity.

The longest ride - Pete is raising funds for the Royal Marsden Cancer Campaign.

This April Pete plans to go quite a lot further – from Land’s End to John O’Groats, no less.  The distance is 980 miles and he plans to cover it in twelve days – an average 82 miles a day!

Pete is appealing to choir members to sponsor his ride to help the Royal Marsden’s cancer research again.  He and his family are meeting the entire costs of his trip, so all contributions will go directly to the research fund.  He starts his ride on April 30.

Pete pumping it at the Cadence cycle centre, Crystal Palace


Pete has been practising for his ride on static machines at the Cadence cycle centre in Crystal Palace.  He covers epic stages of races such as the Tour de France which appear on a display screen and reaches speeds of 55kph - 33mph.

Pete remains under the care of the Royal Marsden himself.   As can be seen, he is evidently in rude health, despite being on the hospital’s ‘watch and wait’ list, with four-weekly injections and periodic scans.  “I thought it was about time I took on a fresh challenge,” Pete says.

"Look - I'm going 33 miles an hour!"


A number of choir members have contributed to Pete’s appeal already.  The easiest way to join them is via Pete’s web-page – http://www.justgiving.com/peteboyo2

Or you can send a cheque, payable to the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, or cash, to Peter’s Ride, 6 Howden Road, London SE25 4AS. You can increase your donation by over 20% by including a Gift Aid declaration as follows:

Please treat the enclosed donation to the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity as a Gift Aid donation.  I am a UK taxpayer and have paid an amount of income tax and/or capital gains tax at least equal to the tax reclaimed on my donations in the relevant tax year.    Name..........Address........Date.........


Up for the big one!  Pete finds the energy to smile during his hour-long static run

 
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JWT x 15

Fans of our esteemed baritone John Ward Turner were delighted at a recent Westcombe Park rugby match to find no fewer than fifteen JWTs present at the same time.

 

Will the real JWT sit down please?

John, who still waves a mean flag at the age of 73, was running the line for Westcombe Park when a group of members and friends known as the Gumbos descended on the match, cheering his every move.

John, as you can see, took the jape in good spirit (though less so when half a dozen choir members, led by his old mucker Kim Ormond, repeated the trick at the last Sandilands rehearsal).

John, known as a talkative (i.e. lippy) scrum-half, played for Westcombe Park until 1987.  In his days as First XV captain he was renowned for his agile footwork and scored a number of spectacular tries. (John claims he cannot remember any of them and in any case he always selflessly passed the ball to his fly half.)

As an touch judge (rugby word for lino) he still keeps up with the game, although according to a fellow member who shall remain anonymous* some oppo players complain that he favours the home side – a charge that is entirely unjust and which John indignantly rejects.

So how long can our John keep going?  Watch this space!

(*St*w*art R*bins*n)


 
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CHOIR LINKED TO FAIRFIELD CELEBRATIONS

The Croydon choir was linked to the Fairfield Hall's fiftieth birthday celebration in a Croydon Advertiser report which also mentions choir bass member Peter Gillman.

Peter and his wife Leni were married at the Croydon register office on the same day that the Fairfield Halls opened - 2 November 1962.   They were invited as official guests of the Fairfield Halls to the fiftieth anniversary concert on 2 November 2012, as reported in the Advertiser. 

The Advertiser noted that as a member of the Croydon Male Voice Choir, Peter had sung at the Halls on several occasions.   The report also covered Peter and Leni's 50 years of marriage, telling how the couple met while members of the Croydon Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament - and had courted in the Black Cat Cafe in Whitehorse Road.

Peter and Leni: courted at Black Cat Cafe

Peter and Leni enjoyed the concert, which included an affecting performance of Bruch's Violin Concerto.  During the interval they were introduced to the Duke of Wessex (Prince Edward),  patron of the London Mozart Players, who performed in the concert.  They reminded the Duke that he and their older son Danny were contemporaries at Jesus College,  Cambridge.  When the Duke asked what Danny was doing now, Leni said that he was a teacher in Cornwall.

"He seemed very nice," Leni said afterwards.




Prince Edward at the anniversary concert:  "He seemed very nice."




 
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IAN'S WALK FOR WENDY

Our bass member Ian Harmer succeeded triumphantly in his goal of walking 14 miles for charity on Sunday March 27.   The walk was for the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and was in memory of Ian's wife Wendy, who died of breast cancer in November 2008.

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