About the Choir

The Bedford Messiah Choir maintains a tradition which stretches back over 80 years. Since 1937, singers from local church choirs and choral societies have gathered together annually to sing Handel’s Messiah.

Thanks to generous local sponsorship and loyal audiences, the choir has been able to donate at least £1000 every year to a local charity. Our annual performance of Handel's Messiah takes place in Bunyan Meeting, Mill Street, Bedford on the eve of Advent Sunday.

​Anyone is welcome to join the choir; there is always an influx of new members each year.

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Our Sponsors

The choir is a registered charity (no. 1117616) raising funds via membership fees, concert tickets and donations.

One of the key areas of funding is sponsorship. 

Currently, we have limited sponsorship in place for the April 2022 concert. As a committee, we are pursuing areas for funding. We would be very happy hear from companies or organisations who would be willing to sponsor us.

The committee are also looking at introducing a Friends of BMC scheme in the near future, as we feel that with a small annual subscription, this will help funding of future performances.

Please contact us HERE if you can help.


Charity Fundraising

Every year the members of the choir nominate and vote for a local charity. It’s always a hard decision with so many worthy contenders.

The chosen charity is promoted on our Facebook page and on our website. The charity is given the opportunity to showcase their activities at our annual concert.  Concert attendees often have the chance to speak to the charity’s representative individually, after the concert.

Over the past five years we have raised over £8,000 for local charities.

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Our Charity for Spring 2022

Carers in Bedfordshire

Many unpaid family members provide day by day care for a loved one who is sick or disabled. Often they provide care round the clock for relatives with various serious conditions - like dementia, stroke or Parkinson's. Many provide lifetime care for a family member with a learning disability or a mental health condition.

All this contributes to isolation, financial difficulties and stress. Carers often neglect their own health to prioritise the person they care for, and caring affects their mental health and wellbeing.

The charity is there for carers in the hospitals, in carers cafes, in young carers groups and counselling. And the Carers Choir provides a break and lifts the spirits. We may all become carers at some time in our lives. Carers in Bedfordshire is a local charity, there for our local community

Find out more about Carers in bedfordshire HERE



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Janet Welsh


Janet has gained diplomas from the Royal Academy, Trinity College and the London College of Music in piano and singing. Janet retired from teaching after 33 years of service in Harper Trust Schools. She has received multiple awards for music and fund raising in the community

As well as the Messiah Choir she also directs the Kempston Musical Society and the Ouse Valley Singers.

Janet has brought her love of music and choral singing to thousands of people, raising in excess of £250,000 for charity.

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Richard Heyes


Richard studied at the Royal Academy of Music. He was awarded an Organ Scholarship to Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge in 1979, and gained the A.R.C.O. Diploma with the Durrant and Sowerbutts prizes in 1983.

Richard is Organist and Choirmaster at the Parish Church of Sts. Peter & Paul, Newport Pagnell. He is also the Musical Director of the Sherwood Choral Society in Bletchley, the Dunstable Ladies' Choir and the Weston Warblers near Olney.

Richard teaches piano at Bedford School, the Harpur Music School in Bedford and privately throughout Bedfordshire