Choir stalwart to retire following 22 years of charitable service

Friends in Harmony leader Bram Bryant is set to step down after 22 years in the role. Picture: Cour

Friends in Harmony leader Bram Bryant is set to step down after 22 years in the role. Picture: Courtesy of Christine Bryant - Credit: Archant

The leader of a popular choir is to retire after overseeing more than two decades of concerts and fundraising.

Alongside a group of friends, Bram Bryant founded Beccles choir ‘Friends in Harmony’ 22 years ago and it has gone from strength to strength ever since.

Under Mr Bryant’s stewardship, the choir has raised money for local, national and international charities, generating a sum totalling more than £52,000.

After years of charitable efforts he feels the time has come to step down from leading the choir due to health reasons, but reflects on his time leading Friends in Harmony with great fondness.

“The nicest thing is being able to look back and think about how many people we’ve helped,” said Mr Bryant.

“We’ve had a number of people come and go but, through it all, we’ve raised tens of thousands of pounds from our concerts for people locally and internationally.”

Friends in Harmony now boasts around 30 members, bucking a trend that has seen participation in choirs on the decline.

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Some of its personnel might have changed over the years but, with Mr Bryant at the helm, several members have been with the choir from the very beginning.

“I shall really miss the rehearsal nights because we always made sure we had fun,” added Mr Bryant. “Throughout the last 22 years I’ve met some lovely people and my wife has constantly supported me, playing piano and keyboard at our concerts.

“It’s not just me that deserves a mention, but everybody who has been involved with the choir. My hope is that it will continue for years to come.”

Despite his forthcoming departure, Mr Bryant will not be passing on the baton to a new leader until he has marshalled two final concerts, the first of which will be held from 7.30pm on Friday (May 4) at the United Reform Church in support of the ladies of ‘The Beccles Inner Wheel.’

Then, on Friday, July 6, My Bryant’s retirement concert will be held from 7.30pm at Beccles Parish Church, where the choir will be joined by the Norfolk Fellowship Brass Band of the Salvation Army and funds raised will support the charity’s work in Estonia.

Anyone who would like to enquire about the leadership role can contact Mr Bryant on 01502 714704.