Now that we have completed our fifth visit from our British friends, I felt that it was time to put some facts on paper. Our first visit from the St. Peter’s Collegiate School was in September 1995. Peter Morris was the conductor, and he brought their Symphony Orchestra. Peter is related to the former Tewksbury Congregational Church pastor, Paul Millin. Paul and his wife, Betty, had visited Peter and family in 1994, and Peter first broached the possibility of TCC hosting the band. Much to Paul’s chagrin, his congregation did not respond at all, so Paul went looking for other churches and asked Dave Ferner, then AS rector, about our hosting and the rest is history! That trip was planned fairly quickly, with my first correspondence with Peter dated 5-15-95. That year, families from St. Anne’s, Lowell also assisted with hosting. In 1995, Claire Hale was their Assistant Conductor.
Their next visit was April 2001, and included Easter. This time, it was the Concert Band, under the direction of Claire Hale, and Tom Barrington was our rector. Having all of these extra musicians for Easter was a real high.
Visit number three was in February of 2005, with Claire, Concert Band, and Tom Barrington.
Visit number four was in February of 2010, and included Ash Wednesday. This time, it was Toby Barnard as conductor, Concert Band, and Tom Barrington.
Visit number five was February 2016, with both Concert Band and Chorus. Toby Barnard was again the St. Peter’s lead, and Bill Bradbury was the All Saints’ rector.
Save the date: Our British guests will be delighting us with a free, family friendly concert on Saturday, February 13 at 7p.m. The concert band and chorus from St. Peter’s Collegiate School in Wolverhampton, England, will be presenting a program designed to please all ages. We hope you will join us, and encourage friends to come as well.
Many thanks to all who have volunteered beds to date. I am inching closer to my total needed, and have roughly 57 of 77 beds. I am working on developing the schedule, to show you all how manageable and fun this British invasion will be!