Nearly 200 friends, supporters and special guests joined us at St Giles-in-the-Fields on Thursday 8 December for an evening of festive fun at our sixth annual Christmas Carol Service.

By popular demand following their widely acclaimed performances last year we were joined again by the insanely talented classical singer Katie Marshall who enchanted the congregation with magical performances of ‘Still, Still, Still’, ‘Sussex Carol’, ‘Walking in the Air’ and ‘O Holy Night’, and by the 45-strong London International Gospel Choir who again had everyone up on their feet and getting carried away by the energy of their performance of ‘Joy to the World’, ‘That’s Christmas to Me’, ‘Never Alone’ and ‘Jesus What a Wonderful Child’.

In between, Adam James and Greg Wise entertained with readings of ‘A Politically Correct Christmas Poem’ and ‘Joseph’s Second Epistle to the Corinthians’ by Robert Salter respectively whilst Sir Jonathan Pryce transported the congregation to a by-gone age with his reading of an extract from Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’. Katie proved there is no end to her talents by giving a reading of ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas: A Correspondence’ by John Julius Norwich in place of Miranda Raison who was sadly unable to join us due to a family emergency.

With such a packed programme of peformances and readings there was a reduced number of congregational carols this year but the congregation still had the chance to sing ‘Once in Royal David’s City’ including an opening verse solo from Katie, ‘It Came Upon a Midnight Clear’, ‘O Come all ye Faithful’ and, to bring the service to a close, ‘Hark the Herald’.

As usual, the event concluded with a short reception and the opportunity for guests to enjoy further performances from the choir and to catch up with family, friends and the charity’s trustees over a glass of wine and mince pies.

At the final count nearly £3,000 was raised from ticket sales after accounting for costs and sponsorship, plus a further £1,700 in donations on the night and to date since.

Whether or not you attended or bought a ticket for our Carol Service – but only if you knew it was happening – we need your feedback and views as we assess how to make the event even more successful and give more people the opportunity to enjoy it in some form.

Please take a couple of minutes (literally) to complete our short, anonymous survey.


With thanks to our generous sponsors

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