Pupils ready to sing their hearts out at Christmas fundraiser

Primary school pupils from across Oxfordshire will be singing their hearts out next week as part of a Christmas fundraiser for Christian Aid.

Organised by Oxfordshire County Music Service, the ‘Big Christmas Sing’ will run for four consecutive nights from Tuesday to Friday at 6.30pm at Oxford Town Hall.

More than 1,000 children from nearly 40 primary and special schools across Oxfordshire will perform their favourite Christmas songs and carols, before a massed choir finale featuring the songs Noel and I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday.

The audience will get their chance to participate in a selection of well-known carols and all money raised from ticket sales will go to support the vital work of Christian Aid.

Music will be co-ordinated by Angela Turton from Oxfordshire County Music Service, who will be joined by Jenny Ayres and Phil Evans from Christian Aid to compere the event.

Oxfordshire County Council’s Music Service epitomises the Council’s vision for thriving people and communities and as a traded service, supported by the County Council, its funding is derived from income and grants including from Arts Council England.

The Music Service strikes a chord in the lives of 8,000 children each week and offers activities across a broad range of music genres – including three county orchestras, choirs, ensembles for specialist instruments, Early and Baroque music, junior and senior rock schools, music technology, songwriting clubs, Stringbabies classes for preschool and Reception children, a Dixieland jazz ensemble and four highly-successful Big Bands.

Angela, Head of the County Music Service, said: “This is the 11th year that we have worked in partnership with Christian Aid to promote the Big Christmas Sing. Oxford Town Hall is a lovely venue and places are always in great demand.”

One pupil from Sandhills Community Primary School in Oxford said “I can’t wait – it’s so exciting” and another from the city’s Larkrise Primary School was confident that “it’s going to be magical!”.

Last year more than £4,300 was raised, which was doubled by UK Aid to more than £8,600.

Organisers are hoping more than £33,000 will have been raised over the 11 years by the end of this year’s events.

Siobhan Grimes, Christian Aid regional coordinator said: “The Big Christmas Sing is a great occasion for all the family and we’re very excited to be running it over four nights again this year.

“With all the hard work the children have put in we are sure they will be fantastic festive concerts and, of course, it will also raise money for a very worthy cause. Since the first Big Christmas Sing the event has raised more than £29,000 for Christian Aid and it gets better and better each year.”

The following schools will be taking part:

Tuesday, November 27: Beckley CE School, Little Milton, St Christopher’s CE School, Longfields Primary School, St Blaise CE Primary, St Mary’s Primary (Banbury), St Francis CE Primary (Cowley), Great Milton CE Primary, Larkrise, North Leigh CE Primary, Rush Common

Wednesday, November 28: South Oxfordshire Young Singers, William Fletcher, Oxford Young Singers, Windmill Primary School, Freeland CE School, Bayards Hill Primary, Fir Tree Junior School, Garsington CE Primary School, Chesterton CE Primary School, Checkendon CE Primary School, Kidmore End Primary

Thursday, November 29: Chadlington CEP, St Gregory the Great Primary and Secondary, Watlington Primary, Brookside, Hagbourne CE Primary, St Thomas More, Eynsham Primary, Sandhills CP School, Tyndale Community School

Friday, November 30: St John Fisher, Crowmarsh Gifford, St Edmund’s Abingdon, Stanford in the Vale Primary, Edward Feild Primary, Kingfisher Special School, Tackley Primary

For ticket information, contact the Oxfordshire County Music Service on 01865 816990 or go to WeGottickets.com to check availability. Adult tickets are priced £5 and child/concessions £2.50.