Military wives hit high notes in Portsmouth

Alex Wardle, from Lee-on-the-Solent, collapsed at home and tragically died in March 2016, aged 23. 

From left: Alex's father, Stephen Wardle, sister Gemma Wardle, Alex Wardle and his mother, Denise Wardle.

Gosport family to keep Alex’s legacy alive by taking part in Great South Run

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MUSIC lovers watched a stirring performance by the Portsmouth Military Wives Choir at the city’s Anglican Cathedral.

The show was put on as part of the Portsmouth Festivities, which are taking place across the city until Sunday.

The Portsmouth Military Wives Choir performing at Portsmouth Cathedral for Portsmouth Festivities.'''Picture: Allan Hutchings (131802-363)

The Portsmouth Military Wives Choir performing at Portsmouth Cathedral for Portsmouth Festivities.'''Picture: Allan Hutchings (131802-363)

The women said they were proud to be taking part in the festivities, which saw them perform their first solo show in their home town.

The group of 56 women sung their hearts out last night at the Portsmouth Cathedral, in Old Portsmouth.

Sarah Kiff, from Hill Head, who sings in the choir and whose husband is serving in the Royal Navy, said: ‘The cathedral is an awesome building and we feel very privileged to be able to sing here. The acoustics are fantastic.’

The choir has been directed by Ben Charles for the past year..

Ben, who is the deputy headteacher at Portsmouth Grammar School, said: ‘This is about bringing the community together to support each other, the singing is a by-product of that. Some of the women had never sung before or hadn’t sung for a long time, so it’s great to be able to work with them and the fact that this is a whole concert on their own in their home town is brilliant.’

The choir sang hits such as Sing by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Gary Barlow, Up Where We Belong from the film Officer and a Gentleman and Wherever You Are, which was made famous by the national Military Wives Choir.

They also sang classics such as Jerusalem, Britannic Salute, before rounding off with The National Anthem.

Rebecca Parrant, the festivities programme co-ordinator, said: ‘The festivities are honoured to have the choir sing as part of our events. It was a beautiful performance and everyone enjoyed themselves. It was exquisite music and it was a moving performance.’

The choir will be singing at the South Coast Proms, on Whale Island, on Friday, July 5 and Saturday, July 6, and again at the Royal Marines Museum open day on Sunday, July 14 and at the Crofton Pub, on Crofton Lane, Fareham, on Tuesday, July 30.

‘Simply inspirational’: Read our review of the concert here