The choir has been in existence for less than three years. It was founded by Gill Riley in May 2015 and the first rehearsals took place in her home. The choir was originally called the Palace Community Choir as, a little later, it met in the Palace Rooms in Garden Street. Then after Christmas, for various reasons, it metamorphosed into St Anne’s Community Choir, meeting every Wednesday at the Memorial Hall in St Alban’s Rd.
The choir was growing and it had bookings: it sang at
several Christmas concerts and charity events.
Unfortunately, however, Gill had a couple of bouts of
ill health which meant that she couldn’t lead the choir for
some periods of time. Luckily they were rescued by Irene
and then David and Pat and latterly by Marilyn, Tony and
Chrissie (all of whom were already committed to their
The anchor was always Chris Tootill who plays her piano with such expertise and talent and then, in emergencies, would turn into the choir leader as well.
The choir was very sad when Gill announced that, on her doctor’s orders, she had to stop singing and therefore to resign as the Musical Director. It became clear that a new MD had to be found or the choir would fold.
After a long search Richard Pomfret was finally appointed in September 2016.
About Richard Pomfret
Richard came to the choir with an impressive record of choral work. He already leads choirs in York, Crosby and South Cumbria and all of them have an excellent reputation. So keen is he to help choirs improve that he travels many miles to lead them. St Anne's Community Choir is actually the nearest to his home in Todmorden.
The choir is non audition but Richard's philosophy is that what is important is not how good the choir is but how willing the members are to learn and improve. He considers it exciting to help choirs discover how good they can be. St Anne's Community Choir considers itself lucky to have him as MD and looks forward to working with him, building their repertoire and, of course, improving.