Celebrating Ralph Vaughan Williams’ 150th Birthday by turning Folk Songs into Hymns

A rousing concert where the audience joins in to turn folk songs into hymns is coming to Lincoln Cathedral as part of a year-long tour of British Cathedrals.

From Pub to Pulpit is the only official RVW150 touring event marking the 150th Birthday of one of the nation’s favourite composers, Ralph Vaughan Williams.

It features acapella folk group Broomdasher, instrumental trio Coracle – led by Belshazzar’s Feast’s Paul Hutchinson, including Anna Tam – alongside Lincoln Cathedral Choir and Lincoln Cathedral Consort.

The concert features some of Vaughan Williams’ best-known and most-loved compositions, with uplifting choral pieces; evocative chamber variations; lusty folk songs and rousing hymns for everyone to join in.

“There’s something for everyone who is a Vaughan Williams fan, and we hope we may introduce them to areas of his work that will be new to them” said John Palmer, From Pub to Pulpit Director.

The centre-piece is the From Pub to Pulpit transitions. Vaughan Williams was a well-known collector of folk songs and he borrowed folk song tunes he collected from labourers around the country for the tunes of some of the best hymns in the 1906 English Hymnal he edited.

Broomdasher and Coracle take the audience on a musical journey – From Pub to Pulpit. Starting with a folk song, they also play dance variations and climax with everyone raising the roof by joining in with full-blooded renditions of the hymns.

They include “To Be a Pilgrim”, “O Little Town of Bethlehem” and “I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say” which will be musically transformed from the folk songs “Our Captain Calls”, “The Ploughboy’s Dream” and “The Murder of Maria Marten.

Tickets costs between £10 and £20.

Click to book tickets

Sponsored by the Ralph Vaughan Williams Charitable Trust, Jakeman’s , Shepherd Neame and Halsway Manor national centre for folk arts.



Tickets are sold as non-returnable and non-refundable.

This programme is subject to change with no notice. We reserve the right to cancel this event. If we do need to cancel all tickets will be refunded.

This event is run through the Lincoln Cathedral Learning, Arts, Culture and Events CIO. Registered charity in England and Wales 1175597. Registered Address 4 Priorygate, Lincoln, LN2 1PL. Raising funds for Lincoln Cathedral.