Organist retiring after 60 years at Clowne church

An organist will be honoured for 60 years of service at a Clowne church during a special celebration this weekend.

Friday, 25th June 2021, 2:26 pm

Arthur Stamper, St John the Baptist Parish Church’s organist of six decades andwhose father was organist before him, is retiring.

Given that there’s been a Stamper playing the church’s organ for almost 100 years, the church is marking this by dedicating the organ as ‘The Stamper Organ’.

Arthur will also be presented with a long service medal from the Royal School of Church Music at during the church’s Patronal Festival on Sunday (June 27).

Arthur Stamper followed in his dad's footsteps to become an organist.
Arthur Stamper followed in his dad's footsteps to become an organist.

Arthur said: “I’ve been going to church since I was a baby – I was taken in a carry cot to Evensong – so the music of the church is in my blood.

”I’ve been there my whole life, now I’m part of the furniture really.”

Rector, Reverend Bryony Taylor said: “Arthur has been a core part of the worshipping life of our church for more than 60 years.

"He has played at many peoples’ weddings, christenings and funerals and has seen much change over the years.

"Although he is retiring from playing regularly, he will always be our organist and we are tremendously grateful for a lifetime of faithful service."

At the same service the parish will also be welcoming its very first curate, assistant trainee minister Reverend Mike Fitzsimmons who will be ordained on Saturday, June 26 at Derby Cathedral.

The congregation, who are currently unable to sing together inside the church, will gather outside after the service on Sunday to sing in the open air to celebrate both Arthur’s ministry as organist and to welcome the new curate to the village.

The service will take place at 10am on Sunday, June 27 and will be livestreamed on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/stjohnthebaptistclowne/live.

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