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Brenchley Choral Society is a friendly community choir, formed in 1997 with the aim of performing a ‘scratch’ Messiah. Under the leadership of Marjorie Ayling this was achieved after 10 weekly rehearsals with a choir of 40, an orchestra made up of amateur musicians from the neighbourhood and a capacity audience. Having been so popular it was decided to repeat the exercise the following year performing Haydn: Creation, again with an amateur orchestra. The Music Director essentially judged the choir good enough to continue, but needed more

substantial orchestral support, so from then on professional musicians were engaged.

Since then the choir has performed each spring with growing numbers, peaking at 100 for the performance of The Armed Man in 2011, with an audience limited to standing room only.  


Marjorie Ayling retired in 2012, and Gareth Stubberfield assumed the role until himself retiring to Cornwall in 2015. Richard Walshaw then took over as Music Director during which time a number of  new singers joined. This enabled a different style of concert involving several shorter choral works together with orchestral and solo items which was well received by both performers and audience. In 2020 the addition of a short performance by Brenchley & Matfield Primary School Ensemble was hugely popular.

Richard Walshaw relocated to Hampshire in the spring of 2021 and later that year we were very fortunate that Roland Millar agreed to become our new Music Director, since when a number of new  singers have joined and the choir continues to flourish under Roland's baton.

Over the years many of the popular major works have been performed as well as lesser-known works. These include Haydn:Creation, Vivalidi:Gloria, Faure:Requiem, a selection of opera choruses and traditional folksongs.  Recent works with orchestra include Haydn:Maria Thèresa Mass and Handel:Coronation Anthems.

Our primary aim is to provide a platform for singers with some experience who would like to join a medium-sized choir which puts on concerts with a professional orchestra and professional soloists.  Our secondary aim has been to support local charities and thousands of pounds over the years has been donated to Hospice in the Weald, Kent Air Ambulance, Alzheimer's Society, Cystic Fibrosis Trust, Headway, National Rheumatoid Arthritis Association and The Community Storehouse, Paddock Wood among others.

Since BCS's formation over 140 singers accompanied by some 400 instrumentalists  and at least 50 professional soloists have taken part in our concerts under four different music directors, raising well over £10,000 for local good causes along the way.






All concerts take place in the beautiful surroundings of the medieval church of All Saints, Brenchley, Grade 1 Listed.




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