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There has been a worshiping community on the site of Ely Cathedral since St Etheldreda founded a double monastery for men and women in 673. The monastery was re-founded in 970 by King Edgar under the encouragement of Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury and Ethelwold, Bishop of Winchester according to the Benedictine rule as a monastic house for men. No trace now remains of the Anglo-Saxon monastery founded in 673 and re-founded in 970.
After the Norman Conquest in 1066, and the putting down of the local rebellion of “Hereward the Wake” immediately after the first Norman Abbot began to rebuild the Abbey. From 1109 onwards the church was also the seat of a bishop of the new bishopric of Ely. Major works began again in 1321, with the commencement of the Lady Chapel, and accelerated after the collapse of the central tower of the cathedral in 1322.
During the next 30 years the octagon was built for which the building is now world famous, the Lady Chapel was finished, and some of the monastic buildings were substantially altered. This recording was made under the Octagon. In 1539 the monastery was dissolved by Henry VIII. The bishopric remained, and the bishop continued to live in the medieval bishops palace (now part of Kings School Ely) until the early 20th century.
In more recent years the Cathedral, affectionately known as The ship of the fens, has undergone much restoration. It remains faithful to its inheritance as a Foundation and House offering worship to God every day, serving its community and as Mother Church of the Diocese of Ely.
Paul Trepte has been Director of Music at Ely Cathedral for the last 23 years and during that time the musical life of the Cathedral has grown and developed to include four choirs: The Cathedral Choir, the Ely Cathedral Girls Choir, The Ely Cathedral Octagon Singers and The Ely Imps. During his time in Ely the Cathedral Choir has toured, broadcasted and recorded extensively.
|1||03:57||It came upon the midnight clear||Sullivan, desc. Paul Trepte|
|2||03:09||Silent night||Franz Gruber harm, Paul Trepte|
|3||01:41||Mary had a baby||Spiritual, arr Malcolm Sargent|
|4||03:04||The holy boy||John Ireland|
|5||06:08||Bon Joseph écoute moy||Michel Corrette|
|6||02:58||I saw three ships||Traditional, arr. Paul Trepte|
|7||02:14||O Christmas tree||Traditional, arr. Paul Trepte|
|8||04:08||Scots nativity||Alan Bullard|
|9||11:16||King Jesus hath a garden – Variations on King Jesus hath a garden||Traditional Dutch harm. Charles Wood, Flor Peeters|
|10||03:41||Maid, mother, Mary||John Lawson Baker|
|11||02:35||While shepherds watched their flocks||Este's Psalter 1592|
|12||03:45||Tomorrow shall be my dancing day||Jeremy Filsell|
|13||03:52||Noël Suisse||Louis-Claude D'Aquin|
|14||02:51||Away in a manger||W. J. Kirkpatrick arr. D. Willcocks|
|15||05:20||In the bleak mid-winter||Philip Ledger|
|16||02:43||Ding! dong! Merrily on high||Mack Wilberg|
|18||03:57||Hark the herald angels sing||Mendelssohn. desc Paul Trepte|