Gwyn Arch

A Celebration

EDITED - Dave Arch and his band

Bulmershe and Central Berkshire - unedited

Thank You For The Music

Taplow Children's Choir

Girl's choir sample

South Chiltern sample

Reading Male Voice Choir - African Trilogy

The choirs performing were:-

Taplow Childrens Choir

In July 2006, Taplow Children’s Choir sang at the Final of the National Festival of Music for Youth (Junior Choral Category) and won the Outstanding Award. They competed against 21 other choirs from around the UK. They reached the final again in 2009 and sung in the Symphony Hall, Birmingham.

South Chiltern Choral Sociaty

South Chiltern Choral Society is a long-established mixed choir of 100 voices and we love to sing all kinds of music! Based in South Oxfordshire and led by our Musical Director Paul Burke, our wide-ranging repertoire includes the classic choral works and 20th century music from Jazz arrangements to West End musicals. Our members come from all over South Oxfordshire, Caversham and Reading to sing together.

Central Berkshire Girls Choir

Central Berkshire Girls Choir came into existence in September 1986, with around 18 members, drawn from Central Berkshire Music Centre participants representing schools across the Reading area. A three part (SSA) girls choir, this was Gwyn Arch’s flagship choir at the music centre, with singers auditioning for a much-coveted place. Many of the girls already studied instrumental lessons at the Centre and already took part in ensembles such as Reading Schools Concert Band, Berkshire Youth String Orchestra or the Flute or Clarinet Ensembles. One notable feature of the choir was that Gwyn always drew its accompanist from within the choir’s ranks - something we know he firmly believed in, as they inherently understood the nuances, phrasing and dynamics from their own singing experience. It is a tradition that continued throughout the choir’s existence, and pianists from within the Girls Choir were also invited to accompany both the Junior Choir and the Intermediate Choir which were established later as ‘feeder’ choirs, giving those younger singers the opportunity to experience that Gwyn Arch magic and learn the ropes before joining more senior choirs.

Succeeding Gwyn’s previous girls choir at Bulmershe, the Central Berkshire Girls Choir benefitted from his extensive experience, incredible choral arrangements and supportive ethos, and the choir rapidly grew to some 40 members over the coming years, and quickly established a reputation as one of the best youth choirs in the South East of England. In 1990 the choir was placed third in the National Choral Competition Finals in the Royal Festival Hall, and in 1995 reached the BBC-televised quarter finals of the Sainsbury’s Choir of the Year competition. The choir was also a regular feature of Central Berkshire Music Centre’s annual ‘Extravaganza’ concerts at the Hexagon in Reading, and they also performed on Classic FM.

Bulmershe Girls Choir

Gwyn founded the internationally renowned Bulmershe Girls' Choir in 1965 when he was appointed Head of Music at Bulmershe Teacher Training College. The choir represented the UK in the BBC choral competition Let the People Sing seven times and were European champions twice. They also enjoyed touring America (3 times), Canada, Norway, Finland, Hungary, Austria, Holland, Germany and Poland.


Parenthesis started in 1991 as The Central Berkshire Parents’ Choir with Gwyn as the founding conductor. It was aimed at parents bringing their children to The Central Berkshire Music Centre for classes on Saturday mornings. Gwyn already led the Children’s Choir and the Girls’ Choir so was a natural choice to lead a new choir for adults. At that first rehearsal 23 people signed up. As the choir grew in confidence, numbers and competence it separated from the Music Centre, though continued to have very close links with it. Valerie Hoppé became the choir’s second MD and directs the choir in this concert. The choir changed its name to the rather tongue in cheek ‘Parenthesis’, the pun as a reminder of its origins.

Many of those founder members are still singing with the choir and it now numbers around 50 singers. A very friendly group of people, who meet on Saturday mornings at The Abbey School, giving several concerts each year. The musical and social legacy of the choirs’ beginnings with Gwyn Arch continue, with Martin Jones as their accompanist who started with Gwyn in 1992. Parenthesis is now lead by Richard Harker who conducts several other choirs and brings energy, expertise, and fun to Saturday mornings! This link will take you to the Parenthesis website with audio and video available online HERE

Reading Male Voice Choir

The Reading Male Voice Choir was founded by Gwyn in 1971. Each year we give concerts almost every month, raising thousands of pounds for charity. Clive Waterman joined the choir as accompanist while still a student, later becoming Deputy MD. He and Gwyn worked together for almost 45 years until Gwyn’s retirement in 2015 when Clive became our MD. Our objective is to entertain, raise funds for charities, and enjoy ourselves.

Guests during the evening included:-

Simon Mayor and Hilary James

David Arch and his band

A selection of songs from the concert are available on YouTube. You can find them on this website in the AUDIO and CONCERT RECORDINGS sections.

YouTube has changed its terms and conditions and it is no longer possible to password protect videos. However, the concert videos on this site will be UNLISTED on YouTube so can any be accessed through this site. They will not be available to the general public.

The concert can be purchased on CD or DVD by credit or debit card using the link below which will send me your payment and your address. Alternatively you can place an order by cheque by clicking HERE

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The DVD movie is split into chapters so that you do not have to watch the full concert from start to finish. Press MENU on your DVD remote control to select the choir you wish to listen to.

Order DVD movie of the Reading Town Hall Concert April 2022 £10.00 incl UK postage

I have completed the editing of the audio CD. As you may know, the maximum length of an audio CD is 80 minutes and the concert was much longer than this. I will include a free bonus audio CD of Dave Arch and his band on a separate disc to everyone who orders a concert CD

Order audio CD of the Reading Town Hall Concert April 2022 £10.00 incl UK postage