Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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United Kingdom Sacred Harp Convention

Winnersh Community Centre,
Wokingham, Berkshire, United Kingdom

September 15-16, 2012

Saturday, September 15

The 17th annual United Kingdom Sacred Harp Singing Convention was called to order by Michael Walker leading 82t. Rob Mahoney offered the opening prayer. Michael Walker welcomed everyone. He read messages from the following singers who wished the Convention well but were unable to attend: Benny Ross—Newcastle-Upon-Tyne; Claire Singleton—New Mexico US; Magdalena Gryszko—Poland and Amanda Parks—Ireland.

The following officers were appointed to serve: Chairman—Michael Walker; Vice Chairman—Cath Tyler; Chaplains—Rob Mahoney and Ted Brown; Secretary—Rebecca Over; Arranging Committee—Helen Brown, Sheila Girling Macadam, Ian West, Sarah West, and Judy Whiting; Memorial Committee—Mike Hinton, Kathy Williams, and Helen Brown; Treasurer—Werner Ullah.

Leaders: Michael Walker 31t; Rebecca Over 47t; Ted Brown 391; Judy Whiting 171; Nick Hall 455; Mandy Townsend 318; Richard Schmeidler 543; Sinead Hanrahan 56b; Robert Wedgbury 213t; Mary Wright 35; Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg 187; Bliss McIntosh 444; Mike Hinton 373; Margaret Gillanders 549; Mike Morrisroe 408; Sheila Girling Macadam 564; Ewan Paterson 49b; Áine Uí Cheallaigh 39t; Mick Verrier 107; Sarah West 80t.


Ian West called the class to order leading 105. Leaders: Hannah Land 138t; Edwin Macadam 534; Lisa O’Grady 183; Andreas Manz 148; Gosia Perycz 58; Chris Brown 512; Anne Eringa 448t; Steve Helwig 181; Helen Brown 432; Martin De Nys 198.

Rob Mahoney conducted a celebration lesson to mark the following events in singers’ lives: births of children and grandchildren, birthdays, educational achievements, new jobs, ten years of marriage, return to health, retirements, the first ever Polish Sacred Harp Convention, and the love of family and friends. He mentioned the success of the London Olympics and Paralympics and led 474.

Leaders: Rachel Jordan 538; Aaron Kahn 284; Lauren Bock 428; Adrian Bolge 156; Eimear O’Donovan 499; Harry Campbell 547; Patricia Temple 33t; Dave Townsend 112. Robert Mahoney offered the prayer before the noon meal.


The afternoon session was brought to order by Michael Walker leading 145t. Leaders: Niamh O’Sullivan and Duane Nasis 65; Joanne Fuller 439; Ed Long 203; Karen Ivey and David Ivey 217; Eamonn O’Neill 250; Eva Striebeck 430; Dan Brittain 240; Fynn Titford-Mock 312b; Mary De Nys 191; Terry Barber 500; Sadhbh Ní Fhloinn 385b; Jo Pendleton 97; Steve Fletcher 128; Bryan Seale and Renata Pekowska 348t; Sonny Erwin 441; Phil Tyler 505; Kathy Williams 142; Ruth Steggles 454; Alexa Gilmore 270; Jean Seiler 472; Carmel Wood 168; David Ivey 120; Judy Caudle 540.


Michael Walker called the class to order leading 111b. Leaders: Steve Biggs 178; Joe Vickers 131t; Louise Holland 137; Kate Kirwan 504; Shelby Sampson 344; Cath Saunt 40; Duane Nasis 542; Nadine Wills 339; Jacqui Selby-MacLeod 32t; Sally Greaves-Lord 216; Andreas Manz 114; Mary Wright 546; Mike Hinton and Dan Brittain 456; Áine Uí Cheallaigh 47b; Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg and Lauren Bock 411; Gosia Perycz 317; Richard Schmeidler 268.

Michael Walker led 46 as the closing song. The closing prayer was offered by Rob Mahoney, and the class was dismissed.

Sunday, September 16

The Sunday session of the United Kingdom Sacred Harp Convention was called to order by Michael Walker leading 138b. Ted Brown offered the opening prayer. Michael Walker welcomed everyone.

Leaders: Rebecca Over 283; Nick Hall 287; Margaret Gillanders 556; Ewan Paterson 45t; Hannah Land 70b; Ted Brown, Helen Brown, and Mike Hinton 77t; Sarah Hill 177; Mick Verrier 383; Rachel Jordan 468; Rob Wedgbury 102; Shelby Sampson 171; Edwin Macadam 236; Eimear O’Donovan 196; Steve Helwig 436; Zilpha Cornett 143; Bryan Seale 209; Steve Fletcher 192; Sinead Hanrahan 352; Aaron Kahn 86; Judy Whiting 354t; Fynn Titford-Mock 362.


Michael Walker called the class to order leading 207. Leaders: Mandy Townsend and Fern Blevins 84; Lisa O’Grady 27; Ella Cumber 208; Cath Saunt 503; Judy Caudle 389; Sally Greaves-Lord 385t; Patricia Temple 473; Anne Eringa 328; Dan Brittain 313b; Sonny Erwin 569b.

Mike Hinton gave a brief history of the memorial lesson. Kathy Williams spoke for the sick and housebound, reminding the class how much they appreciate cards, telephone calls, and visits. She led 72b in honor of Mary Grattan, Margaret Hyde, Mary Wray, Sara Ray, Linty Davison, Charlotte Walker, Donald Walker, Joe McPartland, Tony Parkinson, Bea Gilmore, Chris Sugden, George Wheeler, Alan Jackson, Lois H. Kahn-Fever, Amanda Boughton, Mark Hall Amitin, Joan Simms, Margaret Malham, Jean Dean, Curtis Owen, Josie Hyde, Vicky Waterworth, Jill Accetta and her son Oliver, Miriam Lloyd, Cath Tyler, Hannah Dunleavy, Michael Herrick, Sophie Manus, David Daykin, Agnes Houlihan, Mary Goulding, Mary Kitchens Gardner, Ken Baddley, and Niall (‘Neel”) Henderson.

The memorial lesson was conducted by Mike Hinton, who shared with the class the following words written by Ruth Denson Edwards on a paper that he found in her bible: “You know, when death comes to each old and well-loved friend, we die a little too. Something goes out of us—something that’s missing to the end of our lives. Some how the long days pass on into line—the Loom of Life goes on and on weaving a beautiful pattern even though one, two or three lovely strands are gone.” Mike Hinton and Helen Brown led 318 in honor of the following deceased: Violet Lee and Earnest Lee—Lichfield; Roy Payne—Aviemore; Violet Setford—Worthing; Dave Parry—Oxfordshire; Gordon Corrick—Hull; Joe Reynolds—Denmead; Brenda Grimshaw—Southampton; Harold Newell—Dalton; Malcolm Robertson—Maidstone; Isaac Atkinson—Holmfirth; Georgie Chitty—Billericay; Gael Mitchell—Huddersfield; Alfie Millar (18 months)—Buckinghamshire; Vic Newman and Tristan Mirabaud—Lewes; Philip Higgins—Oldham; Ingrid Fabricius—Denmark; Ita Clenaghan—Cork; Mark Ferguson—Mayo; Finbarr Kennedy—Buttevant, Co. Cork; Paraic Casey—Passage West, Cork; Jan Fairley—Edinburgh; Reginald Girling and Gladys Girling—Glasgow; Harrison Creel, Travis Keeton, Marie Ivey, Ronnie Francis Dyess—Alabama; Julietta Haynes—Tennessee; Alice Fahrbach—Michigan; Lonnie Rogers—Georgia; ; Gregory Barber and Florence Packman—California; Anne Dhu McLucas—Oregon; Janice Robinson—Washington, D.C.; and the victims of the Hillsborough disaster in 1989. Helen Brown closed the memorial lesson with prayer.

Leaders: Nadine Willis 435; Ewan Paterson 49t. Ted Brown offered the prayer before the noon meal.


Chris Brown brought the afternoon session to order leading 350. Leaders: Carmel Wood 195; Dave Townsend 378b; Emily Verrier and children 146; Mike Morrisroe 260; Kate Kirwan 245; Sheila Girling Macadam 415; David Ivey 558; Louise Holland 275t; Eamonn O’Neill 215; Lauren Bock 214; Martin De Nys 147t; Helen Brown 550; Karen Ivey 155; Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg 532; Sarah West 170; Alexa Gilmore 30t; Jean Seiler 299; Kathy Williams 273; Harry Campbell 59; Jo Pendleton 566; Ruth Steggles 535; Joanne Fuller 176t.

Michael Walker recognized John Baldini, thanking him for organizing the kitchen at this and previous conventions, and led 284 with and for John.


The final session was called to order by Michael Walker leading 89. Leaders: Jacqui Selby-MacLeod 122; Adrian Bolge 159; Chris Brown 330b; Sadhbh Ní Fhloinn 272; Ian West 182; Niamh O’Sullivan 106; Eva Striebeck 277; Terry Barber 376; Sarah Hill 176b; Richard Schmeidler 66; Zilpha Cornett 480; Jo Pendleton and Judy Caudle 452; Steve Helwig and Gosia Perycz 377; Patricia Temple and Mary Wright 312t; Mike Hinton and Sonny Erwin 475; Kathy Williams and Louise Holland 108t; Joanne Fuller and Jean Seiler 217; The Cork Singers 300; Dan Brittain 481; Terry Barber and Shelby Sampson 63; Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg and Lauren Bock 426b; David Ivey and Karen Ivey 425.

Michael Walker recognized the hard work done by Steve Fletcher and Martin Williams, co-organizers of the convention, especially during his absence in the USA. He led 340 with and for Steve and Martin. He thanked in detail the officers, everyone who had brought delicious food and all who had worked so hard, often behind the scenes, to make the convention a success. The secretary reported that 77 leaders had led 169 songs and that 141 singers had registered over the two days. Numbers attending by country and state: England—93; Scotland—4; France—1; Germany—2; Ireland—12; Poland—2; The Netherlands—1; Alabama—6; Arkansas—1; California—2; Georgia—3; Massachusetts—1; New York—3; Oregon—1; Texas—4; Virginia—5. Announcements were made.

Michael Walker, Sarah Hill, and Sally Greaves-Lord led 62, and those who wished took the parting hand. Ted Brown offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Chairman—Michael Walker; Vice Chairman—Cath Tyler; Secretary—Rebecca Over; Assistant Secretaries—Margaret Gillanders, Nick Hall and Jacqui Selby-MacLeod