Derby Cathedral stands in the heart of a vibrant multi-faith city on the southern edge of one of England's most beautiful counties.

Learning is brought vividly to life in this beautiful Georgian building, on the site where Christian worship has taken place for more than a thousand years.

We believe visits by school , colleges and universities are an important aspect of the Cathedral's work, enabling students to learn in a special setting, where history, art, music spirituality and faith combine.

supported by our Cannon Missioner the team consists of a part time Education Officer (who is also a practising teacher) and a team of experienced volunteers, many of whom also have an education background.

We work to offer a friendly welcome to children of all ages and abilities and will adapt our work to suit their needs.

 For more information on Education Visits please contact: or download, complete and return our booking form


Promo Poster Derby Cathedral 2511 2611 page 001 1

For more information on the Easter Experience for schools please click here

Please click here for our privacy notice

The Cathedral Voluntary Choir is a chamber ensemble who meet every Friday evening, and sing on some of the Sunday services throughout the year when the Cathedral Choir is unavailable. It performs a wide range of sacred music, from the renaissance polyphony of William Byrd, to works by living composers written specifically for the choir. As well as supporting the musical worship at the Cathedral, the Choir also performs in other locations around the diocese and country, and also appears regularly on local radio. The choir is a very sociable group, and sings to a very good standard. They are directed by the Cathedral’s Assistant Director of Music, Edward Turner.

Anyone interested in joining the choir should contact Edward on We currently have a vacancies for Basses and Tenors, though enquiries from prospective Sopranos and Altos are also warmly received. Entry to the choir is by audition, for which we ask you to bring a short piece or extract of a piece (c.3 minutes) and we will then give you a short, friendly piece of sight-reading.

The Cathedral Choir comprises girl and boy Choristers (who sing separately) and 12 semi-professional Lay Clerks. As well as singing the regular routine of weekly services at the Cathedral, the Choir has made numerous recordings and appearances on national radio, as well as tours abroad to France and Belgium. The choir occasionally collaborates with other musicians, notably The Sixteen and Jethro Tull.



Being a Cathedral Chorister is a remarkable experience for a child. All our choristers receive a world-class musical education, including free one-to-one singing lessons and music theory lessons. Furthermore, all our Choristers are paid for their work at the Cathedral. Throughout their time in the choir, a Chorister can expect to: be trained in professional music-making; receive a unique all-round cultural education; acquire a sense of self confidence and purpose; develop lifelong friendships; and have plenty of fun in the process! We encourage all our Choristers to work their way through the Royal School of Church Music’s Voice for Life scheme, with most Choristers leaving with either a silver or a gold award. Many of our former Choristers have gone on to very successful careers – both in music and other spheres – and most of them agree that it was their rigorous training as a Chorister that gave them the skills and confidence to succeed! All our choristers are drawn from a variety of local schools, and the choir terms usually respect school term dates. Notable exceptions to this are the Christmas Carol Services, and Services at Easter. Boys begin in the Cathedral Choir as early as school year 3 and continue until their voices change (around school year 8). Girls begin at school year 5 and continue until they leave school in year 13.

The Choristers’ weekly schedule looks like this:




Either 1000-1200  or  1710-1910     









Either 1000-1200 or  1710-1910    







We’re not quite sure – are we able to bring our child to see what it’s like?

We hold an annual ‘Be a Chorister for a day’ event, usually in February. More information about this can be found here .

 My child isn’t a musical genius – is there any point in sending him/her along to a voice trial?

We aren’t looking for geniuses, nor are we looking for children who already display musical talent – we do all the musical training here! All we are looking for is an eagerness, a team-player, and a child who we feel would suit the Chorister lifestyle.

We’re busy on the dates advertised for the Voice Trials – is there any other time we could come along?

Almost certainly! Send us an email ( and we’ll see if we can arrange a better time for you.

Lay Clerks

Lay Clerks are expected at both Sunday services (1000-1200 and 1710-1910) and on Thursday Evenings (1755-1930). All our Lay Clerks are accomplished musicians and excellent sight-readers. Anyone interested in becoming a deputy Lay Clerk at the Cathedral should contact



Be a Chorister for a day is an annual event to give children (and their parents) the opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes in the Cathedral Choir. During the afternoon, children (boys and girls in years 3-6) will sing alongside the Cathedral Choristers for a fun afternoon singing workshop, get to hear the Cathedral Organ, have tea with current Choristers and sing as part of the choir for the evening  service. If you/your child enjoys what they see and hear, you should seriously consider signing them up for a voice trial to become a Cathedral Chorister.


BACFAD 2020 page 001


Music at Derby Cathedral

Derby Cathedral has a rich musical heritage, and sung worship is offered here most days. A copy of the monthly music scheme can be found on the What's On page here. The majority of the services are sung by the Cathedral Choir, which is made up of two independent treble lines (boys and girls) and 12 semi-professional Lay Clerks. You can read more about the Cathedral Choir, including details of how to join, here. 

On a weekly basis, the Cathedral Choir can be heard as follows:

 Sunday 1045 Cathedral Eucharist

Boys/Girls and Lay Clerks

 Sunday 1800 Evensong

Boys/Girls and Lay Clerks

 Monday 1715 Evensong


 Tuesday 1715 Evensong


 Thursday 1830 Evensong

Boys and Lay Clerks


The Cathedral Voluntary Choir is an all-adult chamber group who rehearse on Friday evenings and cover for the Cathedral Choir in its absence. You can read more about the Voluntary Choir here.

The Junior Choir is a choir for young children (7+) which engages young musicians and seeks to build their musical confidence. Singers in the Junior Choir are often recruited into the Cathedral Choir. The Junior Choir is re-launching after Easter, get in touch with the music department for more details or to sign up / 01332 202231 

Visiting choirs are warmly welcomed to the Cathedral, particularly to cover Sunday Services through the Summer Holiday. More information about Visiting Choirs can be found here . 

 The Cathedral is used extensively as a concert venue. Those interested in organising a concert at the Cathedral are asked to get in touch with the diary and events co-ordinator, Laura, on 01332 341201, or by emailing

A grant from Allchurches Foundation Ltd helps fund the music foundation at Derby Cathedral, providing music education for young people, enriching the Cathedral's worship, supporting musicianship and musical life in the city and region, and enabling the Cathedral to continue and develop as a centre of musical excellence.


Canon Precentor

Richard became Canon for Liturgy at Derby Cathedral in September 2018 and has the responsibility for worship and music including preparing the many special services which take place at the Cathedral in the course of a year.

Born in Bedford, Richard was a teacher before ordination and trained for the ministry at Ripon College Cuddesdon and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific in California. After a curacy in Worcester Diocese, he moved to Derby for the first time to become Chaplain of what is now Derby University, before becoming vicar of Chellaston and then vicar of Spondon, when he was also chair of the Diocesan Board of Education. Immediately before coming to the Cathedral he spent thirteen years away from the Diocese as Team Rector of Dunstable in Bedfordshire.

Richard is married to Alison and they have two grown-up sons. As a family, they are keen Derby County FC supporters and love the Northumberland coast where they own a holiday property.

Tel: 01332 341201

Jasmine Gill,  Cathedral Apprentice

T: 01332 341201

PA to the Dean and Residentiary Canons

T: 01332 341201

Page 3 of 16

Find Us

Contact Us

Derby Cathedral
Centre 18-19 Iron Gate, 

Cathedral Office: 01332 341201

The Sanctuary at Derby Cathedral: 01332 227660


Twitter facebook YouTube Flickr Instagram

Places to stay near us Click here