Former choirboy, 105, meets new singers

Published Wednesday, 11 June 2014
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A 105-year-old former choirboy has made a nostalgic visit to Belfast's St Anne's Cathedral to meet its newest choral members.

Born in January 1909, Billy Noble was aged three years old when the Titanic sank.

He was a member of the choir at St Anne's Cathedral almost 100 years ago and he still has a passion for singing.

Billy married his late wife in 1938 and after a long career in civil service, was awarded a CBE by the Queen in 1973 on his retirement.

The former singer was given the opportunity to see the new cross community choir and he gave them the following advice: "Learn to sing properly, keep going."

David Stevens, Master of the Choristers explained that when he arrived at the cathedral, there was no longer a boys only choir.

"The impetus for starting the project in three schools was to have another boys' choir again," he said.

"So we're now up to about 12 boys in the choir, who are doing very well, they are singing well and enjoying themselves.

"It's a bit of a culture shock I think, combined with the fact they're practicing in this building, it's the kind of music they don't normally sing, there's a lot of discipline around it and a lot of ritual around it that they wouldn't have experienced before, but they rise to the challenge very very well."

© UTV News
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