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12th September 2015
This year's choir medallists

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13th April 2015
Former chorister returns for concert with her brilliant new choir! Sat 23rd May 2015

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31st October 2014
An English Autumn Concert : 21st November 2014

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3rd September 2014
A New Year and a New Music Department

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5th May 2014
David Arcus begins as Interim Director of Music!

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11th April 2014
New Music Staff

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31st March 2014
Clare Competition Winner

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17th February 2014
Mozart with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

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16th February 2014
Choral Evensong in Cambridge

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7th February 2014
Rage and Romance : Part 1 Done!

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2nd February 2014
Be a Chorister at Candlemas!

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1st February 2014
Our New Archdeacon Arrives

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31st January 2014
ASS needs you!!!

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25th January 2014
The Men in Southwell

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5th January 2014
A New Year’s Tour in Vienna

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26th December 2013
Christmas has just Begun!

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19th December 2013
Mandela Memorial Service

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5th December 2013
Our New Boy Bishop

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22nd November 2013
The Dove is Launched!

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22nd November 2013
Composition Competition

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Restoration of the Monarchy
29th May 2010
 

   

At Noon on the twenty-ninth of May each year the statue of King Charles II which sits on the parapet of the portico is garlanded with oak leaves. This day is known as Oak Apple Day, when we commemorate the restoration of the English monarchy in May 1660. In that year, Parliament declared 29 May a public holiday: “Parliament had ordered the 29 of May, the King’s birthday, to be for ever kept as a day of thanksgiving for our redemption from tyranny and the King’s return to Government, he entering London that day.” The name refers to the occasion after the Battle of

Worcester in September 1651, when the future King escaped the Roundhead army by hiding in an oak tree near Boscobel House.

Being the 350th anniversary of the 1660 restoration of the monarchy, this year’s events were on a grander scale. A service of thanksgiving was held at 11:00am when the Lord Lieutenant read the Lesson from Matthew 21, The Reverend William Davage SSC gave a sermon on the theology of our monarchy, and the choir of Boys and Men sang Purcell’s “Thou knowest, Lord” and Gibbons’ “Great King of Gods”, using the original ode which was composed for the marriage of Charles I in May 1625.
 

“Great King of Gods, whose gracious hand hath led our sacred sovereign head unto the place where first our bliss was bred … and when he hath outlived the world’s long date; let thy last change translate His living flesh to thy celestial state. Amen.”

The service included the great hymns “I vow to thee, my country”, “And did those feet in ancient times” and “O praise ye the Lord!”, the last hymn including the following, specially composed verse: “O praise ye the Lord! this festival day, upon good King Charles new oak leaves display; His reign brought good fortune to this Holy place, the oak, our foundation, was giv’n by his grace.” This verse refers to the fact that after the Great Fire of Northampton in 1675, when the Church of All Hallows burnt down, Charles II contributed one thousand tons of timber from the Royal forests of Salcey and Rockingham to rebuild the Church of All Saints.

After the service, and in spite of the gloomy weather, the choristers and a regiment of the Sealed Knot, a Civil War re-enactment society, gathered with a large crowd of on-lookers to watch the wreathing, this year performed by Charles FitzRoy, a descendent of Charles II and author of “Return of the King: The Restoration of Charles II”. At the stroke of Noon the wreathing took place, a barrage of muskets fired from the roof of the Church, and the ten bells rang a Royal Peal. The Sealed Knot continued the afternoon’s festivities with a demonstration on the piazza in front of the Church.

Photo courtesy of Northampton Chronicle & Echo.
 



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