It is always the highlight of the lead up to Christmas but this year is particularly special as the College is the only independent school in the entire British Isles to be able to hold its chapel services as normal.
Two services are open to the public in the presence of the Lord Bishop and the Archdeacon respectively, and this year’s guests include both His Excellency the Lieutenant Governor, Sir Richard Gozney, and the Island’s Chief Minister, Howard Quayle. A final service on Friday will be held for the school’s own pupils to bring the College term to an end.
The services are based on the Service of Nine Lessons and Carols developed by the Bishop of Truro in the 1880s and first sung in Truro Cathedral. There will be a mixture of both traditional and modern carols including items by Warlock, Rutter, Stopford and Gardner. As usual, there will also be a Manx carol and this year the choir will be singing S’feayr yn Oie (Cold is the Night) by Annie Kissack.
Earlier in the week the Buchan, the College’s junior school, held its own carol service led by its own choir.
Joss Buchanan, Principal of King William’s College, commented:
“We are incredibly fortunate to be able to hold these services just as we have always done. It is a magical way to bring the term to a close and for the whole of the College community it marks the beginning of the Christmas season. With schools across unable to hold their own services this year, we have recorded and uploaded one of the carols to our website so everyone can enjoy this very special start to Christmas.”
Steve Daykin, Director of Music at King William’s College, added:
“This is the culmination of an incredibly busy term for the Chapel Choir and we are looking forward to welcoming so many members of the Island community to take part in the services with us. The musical heritage of this event is extremely important to us and we continue to strive to balance traditional repertoire with some lesser-known but equally evocative pieces.”