by Miss Jeanne E. Greenwood

In the Autumn of 1948 I arrived in Colchester, having been appointed Music Mistress at the Colchester County High School for Girls. Word soon travelled to Wivenhoe that a music teacher had come to live in the area. 

One evening, a lady of the name, Freda Watsham called to see me and asked if I would be interested in taking the Wl Choir. I felt quite nervous about this as, being straight from college (The Royal Academy of Music ), I hadn’t had the experience of choir training. However, I decided to accept the invitation and had the choir for three years. It was a wonderful experience.  

We held our rehearsals in a room at the Park Hotel and the choir seemed to go from strength to strength. Our accompanist was a funeral director of the name Louis Barrel. After a short time we entered for the Chelmsford Festival and won the cup, gaining 90 marks. We sang at local events, including Garden Fetes at the Rectory. l became a member of the Wl as they needed an accompanist to play their anthem, Parry’s Jerusalem at their meetings.

After 3 years I left Wivenhoe to become Head of Music at a Grammar School in Leeds. Unfortunately there was no one to take on the choir after I had left and I think they had to disband.


1, Moss Gardens,


Leeds LS17 7BJ

Note: Miss Jeanne Greenwood contributed this piece in March 2003 after learning from the Watsham family of the existence of the Wivenhoe web site which included a piece about the Watshams.