About the Choir
Currently we use St Mary and All Saints’ Church Kidderminster for rehearsals, and each year we make use of various local facilities including Kidderminster Town Hall to perform a variety of concerts. Throughout our long history we have entertained audiences not only in the West Midlands but throughout the United Kingdom and abroad. We also participate in joint concerts with other choirs, bands and theatre groups, and sing at weddings, funerals and other social events.
As a charitable organisation ourselves, we aim to support others in the community with their charity work. We run concerts to raise funds for selected, mainly local charities each year and have recorded CDs for “Help for Heroes” and for The British Heart Foundation.
We are fortunate to have the support of a team of professional musicians whose credentials are set out below. We also have the support of a local peer, Viscount Cobham, and of our Honorary President, Pete Waterman.
Our Musical Support Team
David Barclay, Musical Director
Our Musical Director is David Barclay who studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He was appointed Musical Director of Kidderminster Male Choir in 2005. Since that time he has also accepted the position of Musical Director with Pershore Town Choir and in September 2008 was offered a place as Principal Cantoris Tenor Lay Clerk at Worcester Cathedral. He also teaches singing in schools and privately.
Tony Bridgewater, Principal Accompanist
Tony Bridgewater is our Principal Accompanist. He was a student at the Birmingham School of Music and St John’s College, Cambridge, studying composition with Peter Tranchell and piano with Malcolm Wilson and Renee Reznek. He has composed music for Orchestra, Concert Band and Choir, and a range of instrumental works for piano, woodwind and strings. His music is published by Forton Music.
Tony was appointed Principal Accompanist for the Kidderminster Male Choir in September 2016. In September 2020 he became chairman of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Association, and the following year he was appointed conductor of the Wyre Forest Symphony Orchestra. He also gives regular recitals both as a soloist and accompanist. In addition to his many and varied musical interests he enjoys classic cars, art, gardening and family life with his wife Veronica and their two children.
Maureen Bowkett, Deputy Accompanist
Maureen Bowkett is our Deputy Accompanist. She held the position of Principal Accompanist from 1994-2016 and enjoyed being part of this vibrant choir. After a few years break she has returned to support the musical team and continue to enjoy the camaraderie of the lads.
Born in Worcestershire in 1947, Christopher Lyttelton lived at Hagley, except for five years, when his father was Governor General of New Zealand. In 1967 he emigrated to Canada. He lived in Vancouver for a year before moving to Toronto in January 1969 where he joined a leading investment bank.
Returning to England in 1973, he married Tessa Readman, and continued working full time in the City of London until 2006. He served as a Director of the Securities and Futures Authority, from 1996 until its activities were taken over by the FCA in 2001.
His interests include gliding, heritage activities and country pursuits.
Our Honorary President
Pete Waterman OBE
Pete is perhaps best known as one third of the hugely successful music production and song-writing partnership, Stock Aitken Waterman and for his world-famous PWL label. He has the unique distinction of being the most successful producer-songwriter in British history. His many awards and recognitions include 13 Ivor Novellos.
Pete has worked with a who’s who of artists including Kylie Minogue, Donna Summer, Rick Astley, John Travolta and Steps.
In 2001 Pete received an Honorary Doctorate from Coventry University followed by the University of Liverpool in 2004. In 2005 Pete received an OBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List for services to the music industry.
St Mary and All Saints’ Church
The Medieval building is a Grade I listed, with a seating capacity of 350. The church is open from May- September from 11.00am to 3.00pm for visitors or otherwise by arrangement, and is stewarded at these times. It is an imposing building both externally and internally and is part of Kidderminster’s heritage.
The outside of the building has fine architectural features, with a tower dating from the 15th century which now contains a chamber with a peal of twelve bells. The interior has many artefacts including an alabaster reredos, depicting The Last Supper; beautiful stained glass windows, as well as tombs, stone effigies and an engraved brass memorial.