Catterick-based Northern Military Kids Choir makes debut performance

The Northern Military Kids Choir has made its debut performance at a special event for service children at Ripon Cathedral.

Hundreds of children from 27 schools attended the service on Friday.

The choir has more than 100 members drawn from six primary schools and consists of both service and non-service pupils.

Angela Campbell, service pupil champion at Le Cateau Community Primary, helped launch the choir.

She said: “We wanted to develop a choir which would have a welcoming ethos, would support integration and raise aspirations.”

Rebecca Stephens, music lead at Le Cateau, added: “The children were auditioned and selected based on confidence and the willingness to commit to the choir on a weekly basis.

“We were blown away by how many children wanted to be part of the choir.”

Rehearsals began in early October and the choir received support from the Military WAG’s choir in Catterick.

Fiona Copland, chair of the choir, said: “Ten years ago the WAGs choir Catterick Garrison was formed giving support to ladies whose husbands were on tour in Afghanistan, it has continued to flourish and provide friendship to many through music.

“This year we were approached by Angela Campbell, a WAGs choir member, for help and advice in setting up a military kid’s choir.

“The WAGs have been happy to provide our support and assistance and we look forward to singing with the children’s choir in the future.’

The schools involved were Le Cateau, Hipswell, Carnagill, The Michael Sydall, Wavell and Colburn Primary.

They supported each other to prepare for the incredible performance at Ripon during which they performed All About You and What a Wonderful World.

The choir will continue to rehearse weekly with two special concerts planned for December 11 and 12 where they will be able to show their parents that all the hard work has been worth it.

Jon Sykes, headteacher at Hipswell Primary school, said: “This is a wonderful and exciting opportunity for children from schools with a high number of families from a service background to work together on a very special project.

“The choir looks set to flourish and grow.

“They are looking for sponsors who would be willing to support the choir so that they can continue to develop.”