There is evidence of some form of organised choir at St. Bartholomew’s in the 18th century. An item in the Churchwardens’ accounts reads "Gave the singers for the King’s coronation, 11th Oct. 1747, 2s. 6d." Subsequent records mention the existence of a small orchestra in 1804, but there is nothing about the presence of choirboys until the installation of a new organ in 1887. Seventeen boy choristers are shown in a photograph of 1900. Ladies were eventually, and at the time reluctantly, admitted to the choir during the incumbency of the Rev. William Pilling!
The 4 part choir now consists of about twenty men and women of all ages who enjoy both Church music and singing. The choir is involved in the regular Sunday services and anthems are prepared to sing at all the main church festivals such as Advent, Christmas, Easter, and Harvest. These give choir members the challenge and satisfaction of singing both well and lesser known music ranging from 16th century Tudor anthems, Latin motets and Victorian anthems, right up to the more contemporary composers. The wide range of services, each month give ample scope for an equally wide range of musical complexity from simple effective songs (such as Taize chants) to a BCP Choral Evensong.
Many Choir members are involved in music making elsewhere including Charnwood Orchestra, Leicester Philharmonic Choir, Ratcliffe Chorale, Leicester Bach Choir and the Charnwood Choral Society.
Choir Practice is at 7:45pm on Fridays in Church. New members of all ages are always welcome. The ability to read music is an advantage but help can be given to those who wish to learn. If you would like to join, please contact Helen Shacklock (email: email@example.com).
The Choir is, of course, available for weddings and funerals . Wedding couples are encouraged to discuss musical details with the Vicar or the organists well in advance of their big day.