Name: Bernard Arnold
"I was born in the town of Hinckley, Leicestershire, educated locally and continued further education at the Westfield Academy of Learning, noted for it's excellance. On leaving school at the age of 18 I joined the National Service, completing with distinquished service in the 1st. Battalian Royal Leicestershire Regiment, taking in Gemany and the sunny climes of the Sudan and Cyprus. My return to civvy street enabled me to persue various careers, taking in hosiery, knitwear, clerical, engineering, painting and glazing, including work in the mining industry."
"I am pleased to say, in my retirement, I am still able to pay my Subs' (just) into the Gresley Male Voice Choir, an organisation to which I am pleased to have been with for 20 years. I was a member of a choir in Leicestershire until joining Gresley and travel a 40 mile round trip to sing with this Derbyshire choir. I very much enyoy singing and also greatly appreciate the camaraderie with my fellow choir members."
Name: John Wilton
"I was born and bred in Church Gresley and still live there today. As a teenager I Joined the choir at the Park Methodist Chapel (where the Gresley Male Voice Choir was formed in 1904).
On leaving school I served an apprenticeship with the National Coal Board and following that spent eight further years as a colliery mechanic. This was followed by a spell of differnt jobs including aero engine testing at Rolls Royce. In 1977 I took a step into the unknown to become an Industrial Sales Engineer in the steam generation and process industries and to my surprise remained in position until 2000 when I was able to take early retirement."
"I am helping to maintain the tradition of Male Voice Singing in the district and on a personal note continuing my family links with the choir following my grandfather Richard Clark, who was a founder member and later my great uncle Leonard Clark, a former conductor. I feel privileged to be part of an organisation where comradeship and friendship has always existed around the common interest in singing. I have lots of musical memories that I will never forget from the spectacular to emotional, exciting to uplifting, and of course some sad ones."
Name: Simon Claringbull
" I live in Ashby, Leicestershire with my wife Claire. I enjoy walking and a spot of five-aside football. I am a Civil Engineer and am employed by Eon UK. I work in an 'in house' consultancy which specialises in asset management, design of plant modifications, fault diagnosis and problem solving relating to heavy industry structures and buildings."
"Like other members, I started singing whilst at school and became a member of the school choir at the age of seven. I had a break from singing between the ages of 18 and 25 and then joined the GMVC. I became interested in joining the choir having sung in the Swadlincote Messiah Choral Society with the Gresley choir members. I then attended a Celebrity Concert and was very impressed by the quality of singing. When invited to join I jumped at the chance, as it was a real privaledge".
Name: Roy Atkins
"I was born and still live in Newhall in South Derbyshire with my wife Janet. We have a grown up son and daughter and did live just over the border in Staffordshire for a while but Janet and I decided to return to our native village after four years. The International Rubber Company Pirelli provided me with training as a Mechanical Engineer and appointed me to various positions. I took early retirement after 45 years from the post of Tyre Development Manager when the department was relocated to Carlisle in Cumbria.
"I started singing at Sunday school and sang my first solo at about the age of 8. By the age of ten I was invited to join a concert party with my brother who played the piano accordian.
Following an invitation from a member at my local church I joined the Gresley Choir at the age of 14. I continued my membership and enjoyed sometime in the second tenors before joining the first tenors.
I was very honoured to be appointed as chairman of the choir, a position I held for 38 years until retiring at the end of the choir's centenary year in 2004. I have had the pleasure of singing under internationally renowned musical directors at massed choir events in addition to three very worthy directors of GMVC. The choir has given me some wonderful and most memorable experiences through the years and although I have now retired from the choir I still look forward to many more as a patron.
Name: Malcolm Till
"After retiring following 33 years as Purchasing and Contracts
Officer in the NHS and prior to that 8 years in the Coal Industry I am able
to concentrate on choir activities and in my other main interest - steam
railways and railway history"
"Brought up in Church Gresley, the birthplace of the choir in South
Derbyshire I first joined the choir in 1958 and , apart fropm a break in the
1970's for family and work commitments, I have remained a member. After
serving for 15 years as choir secretary I became Chairman in January 2005.
It has been a great experience to sing with the choir in many notable
concerts and venues large and small as well as enjoying the comradeship of