St Andrew’s Church is in the Parish of Holt in North Norfolk and has long been a patron of the Arts. Through “StART” the Parish Church is committed to continue to support and promote the arts in any way it can. The Church is home to a large community of faith that is keen to make the Church a community space, open and accessible to all. The excellent acoustics of the Church and the facilities available in the contemporary extension make the Church an ideal concert and exhibition venue. St Andrew’s is delighted to be used in this way and has a growing reputation as a patron of the Arts.
The robed Church Choir sings at the 10:30 Parish Sung Eucharist on the second and fourth Sundays each month and choral Evensong on the second Sunday of the month. The Choir numbers 24 members and plays an important part in our worship and church life. For the Sunday morning service, the Choir sings an introit and a communion motet as well as leading the congregational singing.
Mark Jones started a series of organ recitals at the church during August 2018 and this continued with an Autumn series featuring various local musicians. For six Wednesdays during Lent starting on Ash Wednesday, 6 March, Mark will be giving a series of recitals featuring the music of J S Bach. This will include several of the great Preludes and Fugues, the 6 trio sonatas, the chorale-preludes for Passiontide and the first book of the 48 Preludes and Fugues. All these recitals are free to attend.
Each year the church enthusiastically supports Holt’s annual summer arts festival. The Church plays host to a number of professional concerts and its meeting room is turned into an art gallery exhibiting works often in private collections that are not generally seen by the public. Along with the main festival progamme the Church also organises its own festival of art. The week begins with a Festival Service offered in thanksgiving and celebration of the arts and includes music, anthems, poetry, readings as well as familiar hymns. Free lunch time concerts offer large audiences a wide range of performances from classical to popular, from poetry to drama. The Church too becomes an exhibition space for the Holt Community Primary School and/or local artists. The Church Hall is home to an excellent photographic exhibition by the North Norfolk Photograhic Society.
The Holt Community Choir started at the end of 2018 and already 160 singers have signed up. We have a regular attendance of about 80 to 90 members and we meet on Thursday evenings at 6:30 - 7:30 in the Parish Hall on Church Street, Holt.
A new initiative by St Andrew's to allow local amateur artists to meet and paint together and to share ideas and expertise. Anyone is welcome to just come along and bring any art or craft they are working on and get involved. Meets every Thursday morning 10am – 12 noon in The Church Meeting room. £3 per session including tea and coffee.
Since January 2018, Mark Jones (formerly Director of Music at Gresham's School and Assistant Director of Music at Holy Trinity Church, Geneva) has been Director of Music at St Andrew's in Holt. He is responsible for the choir, community choir and the organisation of concerts and recitals in the church.