Sunday, 6 May 2007

Celebrating Gosnold

This afternoon I went to the Borough's first civic occasion since I was re-elected: a celebration of the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, Virginia. Bartholomew Gosnold, who lived in Bury (hence the connection) was second-in-command of a fleet of three ships which led to one of the settlements that in later years became the foundations of the USA.

The USAF was out in full force, parading and exercising their Freedom of the Borough. There was also a Service of Thanksgiving at the Cathedral, with all the ceremonial and musical expertise that the Dean, Chapter and Director of Music - and the Military - do so well.

The service included the world premiere of Declare the Wonders, an anthem by Roxanna Panufnik (daughter of the composer and conductor Sir Andrzej Panufnik) commissioned by the Dean & Chapter and sponsored in memory of Elizabeth Conran. It was an interesting piece. I thought the mixture of conventional harmony and dissonance never really worked, although the organ accompaniment promised more.

The person on my right, knowing my musical connections, said: "Do you understand this Paul, because if you do I feel I should make the effort to appreciate it."

The Worshipful the Mayor of St Edmundsbury, Cllr Frank Warby inspects the troops with Major General Paul Fletcher

Smiling Mrs Farmer, Cllr Mrs Charlesworth (Mayor-elect) and Cllr Stevens on their way to the Cathedral. Cllr Farthing looks on.

Waiting for the march past after the service - not long for a cuppa and sandwich!

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