Meet George Durant
30 August 2014
With his previous experience of singing with Pye Hill Male Voice Choir, George joined Bestwood Male Voice Choir around 1977. For many years he also sang with Nottinghamshire Police Male Voice Choir at the same time. George will be 90 in November this year and is proud to have been involved in the D-Day landings on Gold and Juno beaches. He is the oldest singing member of Bestwood Male Voice Choir and we are proud to have him in our ranks.
George started working at Netherseal Colliery in Derbyshire and was aged just 17 when he joined up with the Royal Marines in 1941. He was first stationed at Deal, Kent, for training, then was transferred to Plymouth, Scotland, and North Wales. He travelled around the coast on landing craft to Clacton, Lowestoft, Whitley Bay, and Scotland, then around the west coast. While in Scotland George trained at Naval Air Stationing (RNAS), learning how to fire anti-aircraft guns (including Beaufort) at fleet air arm stations. He also manned the machine gun on the landing craft.
His first assignment abroad was at the D-Day landings in 1944. His boat was damaged and the coxswain killed, but they managed to steer the boat to the beach and called back many times to ferry more troops in and take prisoners back. He was there for five weeks and, after a short leave, was assigned to the Far East, travelling to Bombay. He stayed at a Naval Camp and then went to Ceylon, Calcutta, Burma and Indonesia, though did not encounter any fighting. The British Forces landed on the Malayan coast and then went to Bangkok where the Japanese surrendered. George managed to acquire a Japanese sword which unfortunately was stolen afterwards! While in Singapore George was involved in a big parade at which Lord Louis Mountbatten took the official surrender by the Japanese. George returned home around 1946 when he was de-mobbed.
George returned to work at various collieries, finally settling at Annesley. He was married in the early 1950s and has a son and daughter and two grandchildren.
We wish George all the best for his forthcoming 90th birthday and hope he will be singing with the Choir for many years to come!
17 August 2014
Bestwood MVC will be joined by Marazion Apollo from Cornwall on 6th September. Tickets are available online or directly from Peter on 01773 715 819.
On-line Tickets: From Stage And Screen
10 August 2014
A block of tickets are exclusively available for sale on-line for our 'From stage and screen' concert.
Music And Miners
30 July 2014
On Sunday 27 July the Winding Engine House of Bestwood Colliery rang out to the sounds of its colliery band playing and its male voice choir singing.
As part of the heritage officer's "Miners and Music" event Bestwood Male Voice Choir sang a selection of their repertoire and the Black Diamonds Brass Band played a medley of tunes.
Hearing these concerts in the location where both groups were formed was magical. To make the day even more special there was an impromptu fly-by of a Dakota from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. This along with a steady stream of drinks and cakes served at the Dynamo House café and seemingly endless amounts of sunshine, made for a magnificent day in the park for over 150 visitors.
Meet The Choir - Bryce Clare
Concert Review: 15 March 2014
18 April 2014
On 15 March we paid tribute to one of our own - Howard Leese, OBE - a true gentleman and former President of the Choir, who sadly passed away in 2013.
The tribute concert at St Michael and All Angels, Underwood, Howard’s local church, took place in front of a capacity audience and raised over £800 for the St James the Great Church, Brinsley Re-ordering (refurbishment) Fund.
Concert Review: 8 March 2014
31 March 2014
On 8 March, Central Methodist Church, Hucknall hosted the annual tribute to the Choir’s founder, Len Hogg.
An appreciative capacity audience, including Len Hogg’s daughter, Sheila and family, were entertained by a varied choir programme, which included soloists Colin Pursglove and Adrian Griffiths, plus Michael Anthony at the organ.
The concert raised approximately £600 for church and choir funds, the church donating their portion to Bangor University Christian Union.
Thinking Of Joining A Choir?
30 March 2014
This is the smart new flyer advertising the choir as a new hobby, a place to sing and a chance to meet new friends. If you've ever thought of joining a choir don't delay, get in touch on 0115 9794842 or use our contact form here.
Read All About Us
26 January 2014
A booklet about the choir has been written by the daughter of one of the Choir’s founder members, Frank Wright, who as the last surviving founder member, sadly passed away in 2012. Although Helen Smith’s booklet is about the Choir’s history, it is chiefly a tribute to her late father.
Proceeds from the sale of the booklet are being shared between the Choir and Notts-Lincs Air Ambulance. For more details see article in Hucknall Dispatch.
The book is on sale for £5 and can be purchased by contacting Helen on 0115 9532012.
Double Cheque Presentations
17 January 2014
Towards the end of another busy year, Colin Pursglove, Chairman of Bestwood MVC was delighted to hand over two cheques of £450 each to Macmillan Cancer Support Group and Treetops Hospice at a concert at Our Lady of Assumption Church in Beeston last November.
Joining the Choir
If you think you may like to join the choir, come along and listen to a rehearsal on Tuesday evenings at 7.30pm.
We meet at
Bestwood Village Social Club,
Booking the Choir
We are available to perform at all kinds of events. We can provide a varied programme of songs from our 2014 repertoire to entertain at weddings, corporate events and fundraising concerts.
If you would like the choir to sing at your event, please contact our Concert Secretary, by email on email@example.com or use the Contact Us page.
National Association of Choirs
Rotenburg an der Fulda
Gedling Borough Council
Bestwood Village WI
His Grace the Duke of St Albans
Registered Charity No. 702126