Organists prepare to play 756 hymns in one sitting

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Two organists are preparing to play 756 hymns as part of a fundraising campaign for major renovations and refurbishments at a historic village church.

Geoff Hulland and David Stark will be pulling out all the stops in aid of Waltham St Mary Magdalene Church tomorrow (Friday) from noon.

Their aim is perform everything in the church’s hymnbook. Pupils from the village primary school will attend at 2pm to sing some of the hymns to help the organists achieve their challenge.

Sponsorship is being sought - by the hour or for playing every hymn - with pledges being taken on the telephone on 01664 464600.

David and Geoff will be staying on to play the top 20 hymns, as chosen by parishioners with a 50p donation to the cause, from 5.45pm in a special singalong.

The day will be rounded off at 7pm with a fish and chip supper in church, although those interested are asked to inform church members beforehand so sufficient orders can be made.

Proceeds from the day will go towards the £150,000 needed to make the church more accessible and to improve its capacity to host community and social events.

A further £1,106 was raised at a spring fair in the church on Saturday. Visitors browsed a wide range of stalls, enjoyed refreshments and made jewellery.

Christine Alexander, one of the organisers said: “There was so much interest in the jewellery-making workshop that we will hold another one later in the year. We were amazed and felt very blessed by the amount of money we raised.”