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Dr. Stephen Varcoe, Patron

Milford Friends Bulletin

March, 2014



Our first 2014 Bulletin presents an overview of the Trust’s business during last year.  2013 was busy for the Trust, and many Milford enthusiasts, involving such areas as administration, grant-awards, Sibelius transcriptions, editorial work, publications, performances and future CD recordings.  Behind the scenes, members of the Trust have continued their work on development and revised polices.  We do hope that you will enjoy reading our news and ask you, once again, to please contact us if you have any questions, comments, suggestions or further news.


Performances seem to have been fewer during 2013.  Our ever-loyal David Cocker included some Milford organ pieces in his summer recital at the Minster Church of St. Andrew, Plymouth.


The main performance during 2013, however, was the first complete London performance of Robin’s Violin Concerto was given by James Dickenson (violin) and the Northern Lights Symphony Orchestra, directed by Adam Johnson on the 28th November, 7.30 pm, at St. Sepulchre without Newgate.  This was a most adventurous and only possible after a vast score-preparation by David and his Sibelius team, James and Adam.  It was also a large undertaking by the NLSO on behalf of Milford.  We are most grateful to everyone for this dedicated work and performance.



The Trust confirmed the following details in relation to grants:

Grants Awards

We are pleased to announce that 2013 grants were awarded to:

Sibelius Files

For administrative reasons, it has been agreed that all Sibelius files should be removed from the website.  Our digitised scores are now only available on request, and payment of a donation, to David as stated on the website.  In addition, scans of manuscript copies will also be available (where possible), free of charge, for consultation and consolidation.

Since approximately 60 of Robin's 180 works are now in print (through Sibelius and professional publishers), our ongoing aim will be to have as many Milford compositions as possible in circulation through self-digitised files and published scores (latest below are below).

Work continued throughout 2013 on Sibelius transcriptions in the quest to promote Robin’s work.  We wish to express our sincere gratitude to David, Ian, Adam, James and the complete team for all their dedicated work in this area.


Work is currently underway on the publication of Robin’s organ music with Animus Publications.  Adrian and David are putting much thought, hard work and dedication into this fine project.  There have been many requests from organists over the years for a complete edition of the organ works as everyone is weary of working from loose sheets of paper!


Sam Milford and David are currently working on a new design of our website.  We   are most grateful to David for his management of our site since its creation, and look forward, with interest, to seeing the new layout.  The current layout has worked so well and contributed much to Robin’s promotion.

Peter’s articles on Robin now appear under ‘Five Discussions by Peter Hunter’.  Peter        has revised his writing on the early and late songs during 2013, and hopes to present ‘Music of the 1920s’ and ‘Music of the 1930s’ during 2014, while 2015, hopefully, should see ‘Music of the 1940s and 1950s’.  Peter and Adrian hope to soon publish a treatise entitled ‘Robin Milford’s Life Illuminated by his Correspondence’.  This will involve the correspondence of Milford, Finzi, Vaughan Willams and other prominent figures of the age.  Peter hopes that this writing will place Robin firmly in his correct place within the early twentieth century musical establishment, and contribute to the studies of other composers and historical/social studies of the age.

In terms of Robin’s Violin Concerto, David presented an article, already on the website, on the Northern Lights Symphony Orchestra November concert.  Clearly the work was well received and greatly appreciated by all involved with the performance.

David and Peter have discussed a revision of the area entitled ‘Robin and His Contemporaries’.  Aspects in our consideration include:

  1. the area needs to involve not only our well-known composers but many lesser-known figures
  2. the area currently includes the well-known composers but not the smaller ones
  3. the well-known composers are already well represented by many fine academic sources which are too numerous to include
  4. The Gordon Phillips Society will soon be going through a metamorphosis to The Friends of Gordon Phillips (administered by Peter) and may require an individual area.

No decision has been reached on this topic as the additional material may make the area too expansive and demand an individual website (possibly entitled ‘Smaller Composers of Twentieth Century British Music’).  This will all require further consideration.

Peter has also expressed a hope to develop the aspect of individual articles on British Music within our website through his own pen and the work of known writers from within Milford Friends (examples include John France, Charles Pettit and Mathias Richter).  Peter has already approached James Dickenson and Adam Johnson.  Come on guys, let’s have this work!  Peter hopes such work could help make our website a centre for discussion not only on Robin but also on relevant musical, contemporary, social and historical aspects of the era.




Links with Other Musical Bodies

Peter’s writings have now been accepted on MusicWeb International.  The Trust now hopes to create a closer link in the future with MusicWeb International.

Other Business


We are delighted to report that our finances our in a healthy position.  Milford family members kindly gave the Trust a sizeable donation towards the end of 2013.  We are most grateful to the family for all their interest and support.

2014 Promotion

Peter has suggested 2014 development plans to include:

Legal Advice

We are most grateful to Julian Milford and Chris Pennant for all their time and advice on various matters throughout the year.  In this age, it is good to have such professional experience within the Trust.



Auriol, David and Peter, Trustees

March, 2014