What was sung in St John’s Church in former times? Three music manuscript books dating from around 1750 to 1850 used by the ‘singers at Corby’ are now in the Lincolnshire Archives and chronicle the fascinating evolution of local psalm and hymn singing over those decades.

There was a west gallery too. It was taken down in the 1860s.

Here’s a recording of one of the psalm tunes that appears in the middle manuscript book dating from around 1765. The words are from a metrical version of Psalm 98, and the music itself was originally published by Jonas Pratt from Spalding in 1755.

This same tune survived in the oral tradition, with all four parts intact, being passed down the generations by Beeston Methodist Carol Choir: While Shepherds Watched their Flocks by Night (Old Tune).

For more information about the type of music that would have been sung in Corby Glen Church in the late 1700s and early 1800s, please visit the website Gallery Music.


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