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'World Tour of Dorset' for Charity

by Michael Ford last modified 21 Jul, 2016 09:34 AM

A musical duo is performing a sponsored ‘concert-a-thon’ for Dorset Historic Churches Trust in 17 venues along a 50-mile route this Saturday (23 July).

Katy Ashman and Miles Nipper plan to start at 9am in Holnest and finish at Bradford Abbas around 6.30pm. They are very interested in local history, and try to weave in stories from the particular villages they perform in. Their accompanist, Dr Richard Hall from the Dorset Rural Music School, adds his own amusing anecdotes.

Katy has family links with at least seven of the seventeen churches on the route, with ancestors born, married or buried at several of the churches.

She says, “It's not just about keeping the roof on these buildings. Very often they remain the only real community building in rural villages where people can come together, particularly when the school, post office or pub has been sold and is a private dwelling.

“In Beer Hackett where Miles and I live, this is very evident. For the Queen’s Birthday celebrations, for example, we had a wonderful celebration in our village churchyard. Community spirit is an awesome force.

“As musicians, we can be guilty of looking at churches just as venues for hire, but to Miles and me they mean a lot more than that. On a lighter note, it may be the first time for centuries that a bassoon will be played within some of these churches! 

“We would like particularly like to thank all the churchwardens, our two volunteers John and Will helping us on the day, Rev Tony Gilbert and Rev Colette Annesley-Gamester. Some have called us a little bit ‘mad’, but we prefer 'passionate'. The team have given us wonderful support in this new event, which we think is unique, certainly in Dorset. We have been very inspired by people’s interest in the event.

“Funds raised will be split between the Three Valleys Team Benefice and Dorset Historic Churches Trust's other churches across Dorset in need of help.”

JustGiving page here

Further information
Contact Katy Ashman via 01747 853060 or

Katy Ashman and Miles Nipper have been fund raising for local causes with their World Tour of Dorset as the Wandering Winds for over three years. Katy grew up in the Sherborne area, and Miles, originally from Kent, lives and works in Dorset too. Katy is a flute and bassoon player, conductor and radio presenter, Miles is a freelance bassoon and contrabassoonist, conductor, arranger and teacher.

The route, with approximate timings
9.00am: Holnest
9.40am: Folke
10.10am: Bishops Caundle
11.15am: Holwell
11.50am: Pulham
12.30pm: Glanvilles Wootton
1.05pm: Hermitage
2.00pm: Hilfield
2.40pm: Batcombe
3.15pm: Leigh
3.50pm: Chetnole
4.20pm: Yetminster
4.50pm: Ryme Intrensica
5.30pm: Beer Hackett
6.00pm: Thornford
6.35pm: Bradford Abbas

Additional event
7.00pm: Three Valleys Team Night Out at the Rose & Crown Pub in Bradford Abbas for dinner,  skittles and congratulations.

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