St Sepulchre-without-Newgate in London is known as the national musicians’ church.
It has a side-chapel with windows dedicated to various British musicians, the church holds Henry Wood’s ashes and it has a memorial book for musicians who die. It also has a terrific acoustic and is hired for concerts by many amateur and professional groups
That’s nice. What follows is not so nice.
The church has recently written to all the choirs and orchestras who hire it to say they are no longer welcome.
‘This has not been an easy decision,’ writes the Reverend David Ingall, not saying why. Apparently, there is an evangelical group which is prepared to pay more for hirings than musicians can afford.
‘Our ministry as the National Musicians Church continues to be a core part of our Church’s identity and vision,’ continues the Reverend. However: ‘I am aware that you do already have bookings in the calendar for 2018 and we would be very grateful if you were able to find an alternative venue.’
Basically, the musicians have been given the bum’s rush by St Sepulchre’s.
It should be known in future as the National Musicians Church-without-musicians.
UPDATE: There’s a petition going round to reverse the decision. Sign here.