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Alan Shield 15 Jan 2022

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Southern England's most exciting male voice choir!

Registered charity number: 1112732

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Banners scoops Alan Shield

Choir veteran Dave “Banners” Bannister was awarded the CMVC Alan Shield at the choir’s annual dinner at Shirley Park Golf Club on Saturday.  

Banners ("nowhere to hide") and Kim with Alan Shield

On presenting the award, given for meritorious service to the choir, chair Kimball “Kim” Ormond said it recognised and celebrated the multiple valuable roles Banners performs.  He is the membership officer, walking group navigator, music committee member, and general mopper-up of problems. 

In particular, during the darkest days of lockdown, Banners organised the choir’s Beer and Ditties sessions, enabling members to keep singing  in a variety of public houses.  (Unlike the denizens of Downing Street, they faithfully observed all regulations and restrictions throughout.) “This kept many going through the wretched times when we could only sing outside,” Kim said.

Banners, a baritone who joined the choir in 2001,  has also emerged as a dynamic and vigorous conductor who on occasion has even taken the rostrum, on the invitation of choir music director Roger Pinsent, at choir concerts. “His conducting ‘skills’ have to be seen to believed,” Kim said, although adding:  “Roger need not worry.”

In accepting the award, Dave gave his thanks “to everyone who supported choir activities during lockdown and Covid restrictions, whether it was Zoom rehearsals, choir walks, the informal concert at the Oval – or simply turning up on chilly evenings for Beer and Ditties outside the pub." 

Following resounding applause, Dave started an enthusiastic  Apres session, with several choir members recommending to Roger that he watch Banners to see what he could learn. “I’m not going to share all of what I learned,” Roger said afterwards.  “But I did find out that if you’re 6ft 4ins tall and wear a bright orange jacket, you can’t really hide.!



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