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St.Dennis Male Voice Choir

The team at St. Dennis.org.uk would like to thank Mr. Graham Estlick for providing the following information.

History of St.Dennis Male Voice Choir
Arnold Best

The Choir was formed 1922. The Musical Director was Mr. M. Kessell, he had a boot and shoe repair shop at the bottom of Robartes Rd. One evening he called three or four of us together and we met in his shop, and suggested forming a Choir if enough men could be got together. Each of us promised we would try and create some interest by contacting friends, and others and report to Mr. Kessell the results.
Mr. Kessell arranged for a meeting at a Mr. Henwood's Cafe which was at the entrance of Robartes Rd. There were between twenty or thirty men who came; all were interested that a choir should be formed and a choir was born. A Mr. August Greenslade was the pianist/ organist. A. Best was Hon. Sec. and Mr. P. Williams was Treas. Mr.Greenslade later went to Canada, and a Mr. R. Roberts took his job as organist. The choir had thirty-six members and after a time, began to take engagements around the district at various churches. Items were from the "Male Voice Sankey Book" then after a time they included in the programme "Comrades of Hope", "Newquay Fisher­men Song", "In Absence, Evening", "Pastoral" etc. Each member used to pay ld or 2d a practice for use of room and music. Practice was Sunday morning from 10.30a.m to 12a.m. Mr. D.W. Giles took over the organ after Mr. R. Roberts owing to ill health. Mr. Kessell had to give up leading the Choir, which broke un for a time. Capt. Hedley Martin reformed it and the Choir went on for a few years, and began going to various Music Festivals, the first attempt was at Delabole, and they were awarded 1st prize. Mr. Melville Coombe became organist under Capt. Martin.
The Choir gave their first Radio programme under H. Martin with St. Dennis Band at Foster Hall, Bodmin; it was called "St. Dennis Night".
The 1939/1945, war came and the Choir broke up as members were called away.
Mr. Stanley Treloar restarted the Choir after the war, he in turn, handed the Choir to his son Harold, Margaret Treloar was pianist. Under Harold the Choir again went on Radio and T.V. Harold went to Canada for a number of years. During his absence, the Choir had various Mus. Directors, among them Mr. A. E. Baker. Under him the Choir won at different Festivals, won the championship of West of England twice at Bournemouth. When he left the county a Mr. Harrison took over, then Mr. R. Polmounter, then Mr. L. Stanaway, Harold came home again and took the Choir and he is the present Musical Director.
The Choir has become very popular, numerous concerts are given in the County and outside. Most members are drawn from outside of the village now.

In 1975 the Choir made a record "in The Male Voice Mood" with guest soloist Jean Camps (contralto). Already over 3,006 copies have been sold. In 1976 the choir went to Wales and at the International Eisteddfodd at Llangollen was placed 6th out of 18 choirs.

St.Dennis Male Voice Choir recently disbanded

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Cornish Guardian June 27th. 1974 - Photo Courtesy of Mr.Graham Estlick
St.Dennis Male Voice Choir - Cornish Guardian June 27th. 1974

What the well dressed choir is wearing - Photo Courtesy of Mr.Graham Estlick
What the well dressed choir is wearing