A Conservative MP has called for the reintroduction of choral singing in churches and cathedrals amid the Covid-19 pandemic, arguing “there’s a need for it to be restored”.
Michael Fabricant (Lichfield) compared the relaxation of singing to yoga as he told MPs in the Commons that “in the good old days” he would “unwind by going to Evensong in Lichfield Cathedral”.
He called for assurances that “come July 19, things will truly get back to normal”.
Responding, Andrew Selous (South West Bedfordshire), the MP representing the Church Commissioners, said: “The Church is having ongoing discussions with the Government about when choral and communal singing in churches and cathedrals can return and I’m very aware how frustrating the current situation is for choirs across the country.”
Mr Fabricant said: “Some people relax with yoga, others with Tai chi, perhaps you do Mr Speaker, but I in the good old days, when I used to have a week in Westminster and then get back to Lichfield, unwind by going to Evensong in Lichfield Cathedral, very relaxing indeed.
“But for whatever reason people go for Evensong, perhaps even religious reasons some worship, there’s a need for it to be restored, so what assurance can (he) give that come July 19, things will truly get back to normal in Lichfield and elsewhere.”
Mr Selous said: “He’s absolutely right about the beauty of our choral tradition and how much it is cherished and we all want to see a return as quickly as possible.”