News from the Hymn Society of Great Britain and Ireland

For the latest news and information check back often


Annual Conference 2017

18th – 21st July

Click here to find out more.

May 2017

Hymn Writers Workshop

10:00am-4:00pm Saturday 6 May
St Paul’s, Robert Adam Street,
London, W1U 3HW
More details here.


April 2017

Treasure No 79
An Article from Bulletin 276, Summer 2013, Coda by Ian Sharp.
Available to read or download here.

A Functional Art
A new book by Timothy Dudley-Smith. More info here.

Treasure No 78
An Article from Bulletin 271, April 2012, Treasure 78 looks at Developments in the Near Future: Hymnals in England, by Brian Castle. Available to read or download here.

Treasure No 77
An Article from Bulletin 267, April 2011, Treasure 77 looks at Canticles Old and New, by Anne Harrison. Available to read or download here.

We are now taking PayPal for membership subscriptions. Get immediate access to our Members Area.
More details here.

Book Launch in York
The book launch of Looking for a Voice: A Hymnological Biography by Caryl Micklem and Alison Micklem will take place on Saturday 8th April at 2.30 pm
More details here.

March 2017

Treasure No 76
An article from Bulletin 262, January 2010, Treasure 76 looks at Producing 5,842 hymns by Bert Tosh and is available to read or download here.

Treasure No 75
An Article from Bulletin 258, October 2008, Treasure 75 looks at ‘The Price of Sin’ by Leslie Ivory and is available to read or download here.

Treasure No 74
An article from Bulletin 256, July 2008, Treasure 74 looking at Geoffrey Beaumont and the 20th Century Church Light Music Group, is available to read or download here.

John Newton exhibition & 30 March event
at St Andrew by the Wardrobe
St Andrew’s Hill, Queen Victoria St, London EC4V 5DE
More details here.

Treasure No 73
From the Bulletin of March 2007, Treasure 73, a book review of Gillian Warson’s biography on Fred Kaan by Alan Gaunt is now available to read or download.
Please click here to view.

Short Guide 27 Published
Hymns and Ministry to Those with Dementia” by Graham DS Deans.
Ministering to people who have reached that stage of life when ‘mind and memory flee’ presents serious challenges which cannot be ignored.

February 2017

The Winter edition of the Secretary’s Newsletter is here.

Treasure No 72
From October 2006, What are we saying by singing? by Rowan Williams is now available to read or download.
Please click here to view.

Treasure No 71
From 2005, Peace and War in Hymns by David Wright, is now available to read or download.
Please click here to view.

The Hymn Society London Day
Saturday 11th February 2017
10.30 – 4.30
click here to find out more more


December 2016

Executive Committee member, John Crothers, on French radio, recording the annual programme that introduces French-speaking listeners to English-language Christmas hymns and carols. More here.

New look website that incorporates our Facebook and Twitter feeds is launched (see panel on the right) to coincide with the 80th Anniversary of the Hymn Society of Great Britain and Ireland.

Autumn 2016

The Autumn edition of the Secretary’s Newsletter is now available here.

October 2016

The Hymn Society celebrates 80 years, with special programme on BBC Radio.

Summer 2016

The Summer edition of the Secretary’s Newsletter is now available here.

June 2016

Short Guide 26 Myths About Hymns
now available here.

Here are half a dozen ideas about hymnody which may – or may not – contain a grain of truth … as seen by a self-confessed hymn lover.

May 2016

Short Guide 25 Ordination Hymns
now available here.

Ordinations and commissioning services happen in a variety of contexts, and are a cause of great celebration and spiritual power. Liturgies and traditions notwith-standing, the singing of hymns on these occasions plays a crucial role, and their selection is, therefore, not to be undertaken lightly.

May 2016

Short Guide 24 Confirmation Hymns
now available here.

‘Confirmation’ covers various approaches to Christian initiation and commitment. When adults make a commitment and are received into membership of the church, the act of worship surrounding it can be a celebratory, evangelistic, sacramental expression of unity, and the hymns have a vital role to play in the blend of joy, hope and affirmation that a Confirmation should be.

Short Guide 23 Baptism Hymns
now available here.

Baptism can occur in different contexts and at different stages in life, yet the fundamental spiritual and ecclesiological purpose and outcome of such initiation is the same. Nevertheless, each context and understanding of baptism demands its own approach if they are going to be not only welcoming celebrations of commitment but opportunities to preach and sing the faith of Christ crucified and risen.

Short Guide 22 Funeral Hymns
now available here.

Christian funerals take place either in a church or at a crematorium or cemetery chapel. While the circumstances are different the issues surrounding the picking of hymns are similar. Hymn singing at funerals is in decline, so even greater care needs to be taken in using hymns to enhance the hope of a funeral, rather than increase the discomfort.

Short Guide 21 Wedding Hymns
now available here.

Many couples still choose to marry in church, yet the combined impact of more choice and the increasing lack of prior knowledge of hymnody has made it increasingly more difficult to accommodate their needs and desires with Christian integrity and wisdom. Tunes are the key to wedding hymns.

Spring 2016

The Spring edition of the Secretary’s Newsletter is available here.

Winter 2016

The Winter edition of the Secretary’s Newsletter is available here.

February 2016

Short Guide 20 Using Short Songs in Worship
now available here.

The New Testament encourages believers to sing ‘Psalms, hymns and spiritual songs’, suggesting the Body of Christ needs a range of sung material. As well as hymns, the imaginative use of short songs of various kinds can enrich worship; this paper explores the repertoire of shorter songs and suggests ways of incorporating them into services.