Fleet Parish Music

The music for services in Fleet Parish is regarded as extremely important as a vehicle for worship and for uplifting the congregation. We aim for high quality music in a variety of styles to suit each type of service and we provide these in either All Saints Parish Church in Church Road or the daughter church of Ss Philip and James in Kings Road. In order to achieve this, we have three choirs, an orchestra and many organists and pianists as well as other solo instrumentalists.

We use a live Music List document to coordinate the music at services, which acts as a music rota too. The Music List document can be edited by clicking here.

Music Coordination

The Fleet Parish Music Coordinator is Robert Smith and the Parish Music Personnel Manager is Anne Smith.

Each church has a Music Warden who is responsible for maintaining the music library, organising the choir seating and ensuring the hymn numbers are displayed for the choir. The All Saints Music Warden is Kerensa Pearson and the Ss Philip and James Music Wardens are Anne and Brian Biffin.

Each Choir has a Secretary who is responsible for liaising with the Musical Director of the choir, communicating with choir members, and ensuring the right music is in the right place for rehearsals and services. For the Worship Choir this is Anne Smith, for the Parish Choir it is shared by Robert and Anne Smith and for the Evensong Choir it is Robert Smith.

Parish Choir

Musical Director: Andrew Gray

Choir Secretary: Robert and Anne Smith

The Parish Choir Members’ Page provides information about music for the next services involving the Parish Choir, including sheet music and practice recordings.

The Parish Choir is approximately 25-strong and is a four-part SATB choir of experienced and able singers who read music and have good sight-reading ability.

This choir currently sings at the Parish Eucharist on the 2nd Sunday of the month, at the Church of Ss Philip and James, and on the 3rd Sunday at All Saints Parish Church.

Worship Choir

Musical Director: Dorina Latawska

Choir Secretary: Anne Smith

The Worship Choir Members’ Page provides information about music for the next services involving the Parish Choir, including sheet music and practice recordings.

The Worship Choir is a 25-strong unison choir comprising a range of singers from the highly experienced to those who do not read music but love to lead musical worship. No previous experience is necessary to join and we have several members who have never sung in a choir before.

This choir currently sings at the Parish Eucharist on the 1st Sunday of the month at All Saints Parish Church and with the Parish Orchestra at the Church of Ss Philip and James on the 4th Sunday.

Anyone interested in joining such a choir should, in the first instance, contact Anne Smith (Music Personnel Administrator) at anne.smith33-at-btinternet.com.

Evensong Choir

Musical Director: Mike Ford

Choir Secretary: Robert Smith

This invited choir is drawn from church choirs over a wide area including some who travel over 40 miles to sing Choral Evensong. There is a single one-hour rehearsal to cover all the music required for Choral Evensong – introit, preces and responses, psalm, canticles (Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis), anthem and hymns.

The Evensong Choir Members Page provides information about music for the next service involving the Evensong Choir, including sheet music and practice recordings.

The Evensong Choir is usually 30-strong but draws from over 70 invited, highly experienced and able singers who read music and have a high level of sight-reading ability.

This choir currently sings at Choral Evensong on the 2nd Sunday of the month alternating between the Church of Ss Philip and James and All Saints Parish Church. The choir rehearses at 5 pm before a 6.30 pm Choral Evensong service. It has also appeared at the annual Carol Service at Ss Philip and James, augmented and accompanied by the Parish Orchestra.

Parish Orchestra

Conductor: Mike Ford, Musical Leader: Anne Smith

This instrumental group includes instruments from all sections of the orchestra, numbering up to 15 players when all present. The orchestra accompanies hymns and songs as well playing before the service and during communion, usually ending with a rousing ‘spiritual’ jazzy arrangement – often the most challenging piece! Music is arranged and printed for each service, for the particular players who are available, always catering for their ability. Hence, players starting on a new instrument often join the orchestra from an early stage – probably about Grade 4 or 5 – and, as they become more confident, they are given more challenging parts to play.

The orchestra plays at the Church of Ss Philip and James on the 4th Sunday of the month and rehearses at 9:15 am before the 10 am service. It has also accompanied the Carol Service at Ss Philip and James and played at various festivities in Fleet town centre.

Anyone interested in joining the orchestra should, in the first instance, contact Anne Smith (Parish Music Personnel Manager) at anne.smith33-at-btinternet.com.

Celtic Worship Group

Musical Leader: Robert Smith

This is a small chamber group and comprises a few members of the Parish Orchestra, enough to play the full harmony for Celtic hymns and support the congregation on the tune. A typical group would include a flute, two violins, a viola and a bassoon or ‘cello. Celtic-style music is played before and after the service, which is usually non-eucharistic but sometimes it is a Celtic Eucharist with additional music during communion.

Church Organs

All Saints Church

The rebuilt All Saints parish church now has an advanced digital organ, which has recently been put through its paces in a recital by Rev Roy Woodhams, Rector of Cranleigh and past Vicar of Fleet. A short recording of the Voluntary in C by John Stanley (2nd movement), composed early in the 18th Century, from this recital is available here.

THE ORGAN – VISCOUNT ENVOY 35F

Our Organ was installed on July 10/11 this year (2023). It is a ‘Physical Modelling’-based digital instrument in a real medium oak veneer cabinet. There are 35 speaking tilt-tab stops, two 61-note tracker-touch manuals, which are velocity-sensitive for orchestral voices, and a 32-note radiating concave pedal board. The organ comes with four preset organ styles (English, Baroque, Romantic, and Symphonic) and four user-defined variable styles. It was individually “voiced” for our building by Richard Goodall from Viscount UK on 24 July 2023.
Our bespoke loudspeaker system consists of 8 Loudspeakers mounted with 4 each side of the church, following the roof line in the North and South Aisles. A large Sub Woofer provides the necessary power and range to do justice to the instrument’s 16’ and 32’ stops. There is a matching height-adjustable bench for all the long-legged and short-legged musicians!

Ss Philip and James Church

P&J used to have a pipe organ in the organ loft, with the organist and choir up there too. However in 2007, a new pipe organ was installed. This was by F.H. Browne and came from the New Methodist Church, Ramsgate (N14628), being rebuilt and installed here with tonal alterations, new solid state transmission and new front casework. The new organ required more space in the organ loft so, at that stage, the console was moved downstairs, connected by fibre-optic cable and the choir also moved down to be next to the console.

All Saints Church organ console and Rev Roy Woodhams, past Vicar of Fleet, who gave a recital on this organ in October 2023.