A  Concert of 18th & 19th century music from the pubs and pulpits of rural Sussex with readings from a Warbleton farmer’s diaries.


St Mary’s Church, Church Hill, Warbleton TN21 9BD

Saturday 3rd August at 3.00pm


Sussex Harmony was formed to keep alive the music performed in rural parishes before 1850.  Written for and by amateur musicians, singers and instrumentalists joined in psalms, hymns, canticles, carols and secular songs to celebrate the year.  This is called West Gallery music, as it was often performed in a gallery at the west end of the church, like the one at Warbleton before the reforming Victorians tore it down and threw out the village choirs.  But they hadn’t helped themselves as they played with the same exuberance as they did at the village dances.  There are plenty of stories about the bust ups between the vicar and the “musicianers”.


Come and hear the music would have been heard in pub and pulpit in church and chapel at such times as Easter and Christmas, at harvest festivals and funerals.  This was the music that Nicholas Oxley would have heard and we will intersperse the music with appropriate readings, including of course excerpts from the Oxley diaries, thanks to the Sussex Family History Group who are supporting the festival.

The concert is free but we welcome donations to support the festival