It started to feel a lot like Christmas at St. Mary’s when the school staged its ever-popular annual carol concert.
Staff, students and their families gathered at a packed SS Peter and Paul Church on Liverpool Road to enjoy the atmospheric service in the 100-year-old building.
The Message of Christmas concert - which was partly candlelit - featured a selection of readings, carols and instrumental and choral performances coordinated by the school’s Director of Music, Andrew Byers.
The programme included both traditional songs and more modern festive favourites, with contributions from the school’s Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra and Chamber Choir.
Unusual features of this year’s concert included Sixth Form student Matteo Ressa conducting the Lower School Choir, accompanied by another Sixth Former, Georgina Duncan, on piano.
There was also a beautiful and very well received a cappella version of Mother Mary, a song written by American folk musician Eliza Gilkyson and performed by a small group of Sixth Form singers.
At the end of the service, the evening continued in festive fashion with the serving of mulled wine and mince pies back at the school.
Principal, Mike Kennedy, commented: “The carol concert is always a very popular event with families, and a really enjoyable way to mark the start of the Christmas season.
“Once again the event proved to be a great success, helped in no small part by the wonderful setting of SS Peter and Paul Church.
“I would like to pay tribute to all the students and staff whose hard work and talent helped to make the service such a first-class musical evening.”
Mr Kennedy also pointed out that everyone involved with St. Mary’s is now looking forward to the school’s centenary in 2019, and a number of special celebration events that will take place throughout the year.