SYP Male Voice Choir

 Do you like karaoke?  How about singing in a group with like-minded colleagues. SYP have a male voice choir, probably the oldest police male voice choir in the UK (founded in 1925).  Fancy joining us – come along on Monday nights 7pm x 9pm. We currently rehearse at Hall Cross School, Thorne Road, Doncaster.

  History of the Choir


(A short history of the South Yorkshire Police Male Voice Choir)

We don't really know whose idea it was, but whoever it was, would they be surprised to discover that the "Beat Goes  On' to this day?

Sometime before the 5th October 1925, in the now demolished Guildhall in Doncaster, what is now Marks and Spencer's store in Frenchgate, someone decided to do something to help the impoverished and bare footed children of the town. And so commenced the 81 year history of what is now known as the South Yorkshire Yorkshire Police Male Voice Choir.

The group's first concert on the 5th October of that year was performed at the Doncaster Grand Theatre. The venue was at that time a flourishing venue for many renowned Music Hall and variety performances.

This conert was performed by the Borough Police Officers and was in aid of the Doncaster County Boroughs' then Chief Constable's Charity, to buy "Boots for the Bairns'

That is the very early part of the Choir's history of their formation. Little more is known of this period in the choirs history.

Throughout the war years, 1939-45, music in the Police Service, understandably, took a back seat.

The first peacetime concert was in 1946, held at Doncaster Waterdale Girls High School with a local Brass Bad and local artiste's.

1948 saw the start of the tradition which continues to this day, the annual Christmas Carols on the Wards at Doncaster Royal iInfirmary.


syp male voice choir

 Various amalgamations in Police Service forced the Choir to change names to that commensurate with the new Police Authority governing the town, initially known as Doncaster County Borough Police Male Voice Choir.

1974 saw the change of name to the choir's present name.

The thos of the Choir through all its years has been to raise funds for National and Local Charities. It is difficult to comment on the amounts raised over the year but it will certainly be in excessof six figures. Whilst raising funds, there have been some notable and memorable occasions for the Choir.

In addition to performing in many local Church Halls, they have sung with other Choirs in such prestigious venues as the Royal Festivel Hall, 1984, in the presence of HRH Princess Margaret. This was in aid of the NSPCC,. Also on this bill were personalities Michael Bentine and Tom O'Connor.

In 1987 at the Royal Albert Hall (1000 Police voices) to raise funds for Save the Children. We have also performed twice at Cardiff Arms Park, (now the Millennium Stadium) when 10,000 male voices fro all over the world sang to raise funds for Children's Charities through the auspices of 'Lord's Taverners.'

The Cardiff events were particularly memorable as these events in 1992 included Tom Jones, with the combined Bands of the Welsh, Irish, Scots and Coldstream Guards.

In 1993 with diva Dame Shirley Bassey and the London Philharmoic Orchestra accompanied by the Choirs in a rendition fo the Beatles "Hey, Jude". nBoth these events were shown live on national television.

Such events with other Choirs have lent to exchanges and visits to places as far away as Herten and Bocchum in Germany, Newport in Wales, Plymouth, Portsmouth and the Catherdral City of Hereford where Concerts have been performed with local Choirs. The Choir singing in the national language of the hosts in Germany and Wales tested language skills of the choir members.

The year 2000 was filled with a mixture of emotions. The enjoyment of the 75th anniversy of the Choir and a visit to the Birmingham NEC were a Musical Extravaganza took place with a plethora of Music from Police Officers across the UK. This included the British Police Symphony Orchestra, Police Brass Bands, Police Pipe Bands, Police Choirs and a multitude of other musical talent.

The 75th Anniversary concer, with the internationally renowned pianist Mr John Briggs. Memorable not just for the event, but for the fact that choir members had to be seconded to lift a three quarters of a ton Steinway concert piano up the staircase into the hall at the concert venue!

The great sadness at the loss of our Musical Director of some 25 years Captain Peter Sumner MBE, LRAM, ARCM, RM (RET'D). It is perhaps worthy of note that in some 50 years the choir has had only two Muscial Directors and three accompanists.

In 2001 the choir visited Cyprus and performed a concert in 90 degrees plus heat at the British Ex Patriots Club in Phaphos to an enthusiastic audience.

The choir has, over the years, made a number of records, audio tapes and cds, all of which have sold well to the general public. Any monies raised from these sales have been put to use to provide the choir with music, clothing and transport.

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Contact Information:

Telephone: 0114 296 4945/296 4946

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Section Category: Indoor