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Choir sings at Westminster wedding

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Southern England's most exciting male voice choir!

Registered charity number: 1112732

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Choir sings at Westminster wedding

The Croydon choir sang at the Westminster wedding of Julia Weatherill, granddaughter of the late Commons speaker Lord Weatherill, on Saturday September 7.  Afterwards we received a letter of generous praise from the bride's father, Bernard Weatherill - extracts to be found below.

The happy couple with choir members after the ceremony

The wedding was held at St Margaret’s, Westminster, known as the parish church of the House of Commons. The Croydon choir sang Battle Hymn of the Republic, Benedictus, and Be Still My Soul – also known as the Finlandia Hymn.



Lady Weatherill, escorted by a family friend, shares a joke with the choir

The choir was conducted by musical director Richard Hoyle and the accompanist was choir pianist Lana Bode, who played her virtuouso  solo during the Finlandia Hymn.  The Finlandia Hymn proved particularly affecting for the Finnish contingent at the wedding – Julia’s husband Jouni is from Finland – with several members near to tears.

Jouni and Julia pose with choir beside Westminster Abbey 

After the wedding Julia and Jouni thanked the choir in person for their singing and posed with them for photographs.   Julia’s father Bernard Weatherill and Lady Weatherill, widow of Lord Weatherill, also gave the choir generous thanks and praise. CMVC sang Battle Hymn of the Republic at Lord Weatherill’s memorial service at Croydon Minister in 2007.

Bernard Weatherill, father of the bride, thanks choir organiser Dave Bannister

Among the highlights of the wedding service, conducted by the Rev Andrew Tremlett, Canon of Westminster and Rector of St Margaret’s, was a reading from Winnie the Pooh, ending in the line: “Some people care too much. I think it’s called love.” Another was a seductive reading, in Finnish, from the Song of Solomon by the actress Ella Pyhältö – who was among those visibly moved by the Finlandia hymn.

Actress Ella Pyhältö - gave seductive reading from Song of Solomon

After the wedding most choir members repaired to the Red Lion in Whitehall, where a number regaled passers-by with a selection from the choir’s familiar après  repertoire.

CMVC's Nev Clark leads Whitehall après

Following the wedding, we received a letter of thanks from the bride’s father, Bernard Weatherill, who gave the choir lavish praise, as the following extracts show.

“Your choir quite simply knocked the socks of everyone; you were the stars of the show, and your participation absolutely ‘made’ the wedding ... high though the bar was already set by the setting itself and Canon Andrew Tremlett's very high class Address. Adjectives such as ‘stonking’ were being bandied about to describe the effect of your contribution, and several Finns were in tears after the choral version of Finlandia!!


“I very, very much appreciate the professionalism with which the Croydon MVC performed, and the gusto and obvious enjoyment with which they sang. A HUGE well done and thank you to all at Croydon MVC.  We really are very grateful. It made the day all the more special to have you all sing for us.”

Photographs by JWT and PG

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