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Yate Choral Society is a mixed choir with over 50 members which is celebrating its 50th Anniversary in 2016.  


               THE BEGINNING


by Terry Payne (original M.D. 1966 - 1968)

                                  (click link for personal biography)



Our first rehearsal was on Tuesday the 15th February 1966 with 11 singers and Betty Heathfield as our accompanist. 


Howard Lewis allowed us to use Yate Ridge School free of charge.


Numbers increased and our first concert was on the 20th October 1966, admission 2/- and we made a profit of £30.16.6d so someone got in for 6d!  


Gertrude Higgins, always one of our most enthusiastic members, printed the drafts for our programmes.


The membership of the Choral Yate Society went from strength to strength.


By December 1966 we had 38 singers for the Christmas Carols for Everyone concert.



Terry Payne left the society in 1968




 Robert Davies took over from Terry Payne as Musical Director in 1968.

He is seen here conducting at the “Festival of Song” concert at the

 St Edmunds School Yate on

2nd November of that year.


Robert Davies continued as Musical Director until 1970 when Mary Towersey took over the baton.


Geoffrey Wickham (seen here with Hazel Wickham on piano in October 1991) replaced her as Musical Director in 1971.  


Their first concert as M.D. and accompanist was on 22nd April 1972  when the choir performed the Nelson Mass by Haydn and  Zadok the Priest by Handel  with the Bristol Youth Orchestra




  At Chipping Sodbury School in the late 1980’s 





20th  Anniversary - 1986


With the Chorale Chanteverte at Cesson – May 1987





Entente Cordiale


The exchange between Yate Choral Society and the French choir, La Chorale Rene Rose was begun in the spirit of friendship through our shared love of singing.

Members of Yate Choral Society travelled to Coulanges sur Yonne, a small town in Burgundy in 2004, and bonds were established immediately.

Since then, the two choirs have met every two years on each side of the Channel, and at concerts given jointly, we have listened to, and performed a variety of music from our two cultures.

We have had opportunities to discover our two regions, and, of course to sample our different cuisines.

It has been a memorable experience for us all, and we look forward to continuing the mutual affection, built up over the past twelve years.