Banner and logo for Hereford Police Male Choir

News 2017

VETERAN CHOIR CHIEF DIES

Brian Williams, secretary of Hereford Police Male Choir for virtually all of its 60 years existence, died on Sunday September 3rd aged 86. He was awarded the MBE for services to male voice singing and was nationally recognised as a true choir champion.

Picture of Brian Williams, founder member of Hereford Police Choir

Brian was born in Hereford, joining the police force after national service with the army in Hong Kong. His first posting as a policeman was at Bromyard, followed by Ewyas Harold and Peterchurch. When the West Mercia force was set up he and wife Margaret moved with their family to Worcester, living close to police headquarters at Hindlip, where he was Inspector in the traffic department. Brian was one of the founders of the police choir when it was set up in 1957 to sing at a Hereford Cathedral celebration to mark the centenary of the old Herefordshire Constabulary. The Hereford Police Male Choir would later become open to men from all walks of life.

Nurtured by Brian, a top tenor, the choir achieved national acclaim when it performed on the BBC TV show ‘Last Choir Standing’. They are also regular performers at the London Welsh Festival of male voice choirs at the Royal Albert Hall. Brian was particularly proud of the Police Choir's Young Musicians' Bursary, an annual award of £1,000 to help a young musician in Herefordshire or Worcestershire wanting to make a career in music.

Choir chairman Ray Williams, a fellow retired police officer, said:

“Brian's contribution to the world of male voice singing has been immense. His untiring work running the police choir over six decades created an award-winning choir, giving men the opportunity to gain fellowship and friendships through their music while entertaining huge numbers in the audiences who enjoyed their singing. He was especially proud of the near £1m the choir raised over the years for charity. He often referred to the choir as a ‘Band of Brothers’.”
He is survived by his wife Margaret, five children Biddy, Matthew, Katie, Annie and Sally, ten grandchildren and five great grandchildren. His eldest son Andrew died in 2013.