Medway Skylarks

Next SKYLARKS Session: Saturday 10 November 2018

Next Performance: Saturday 24 November at the St Mary's Island Community Centre Christmas Fair. Please arrive by 2.30pm for 3.15pm performance - this replaces the usual Skylarks in the morning.


MNN has promoted the formation of this singing and movement group, in association with Professor Grenville Hancox of the Canterbury Cantata Trust and Trish Vella-Burrows of the Sidney De Hann Centre for Arts & Health. This therapeutic activity has been proven to be effective for those with Parkinson's Disease and the research has now been widened to include ALL other neurological conditions. Medway Skylarks meet Saturday mornings, from 10.30am to noon, at the St Mary's Island Community Centre, Island Way West, Chatham, Kent ME4 3EP.

YOU ARE VERY WELCOME TO JOIN US.  Either just turn up or drop us an email for more information: info@medwayneuro.org.uk

Funding News: We have just heard the great news that Medway Skylarks has been awarded a grant of £1,040 by Medway CCG Small Grants scheme administered by Involving Medway via Medway Community Foundation. This will fully fund 'Sing to the Beat' practioners, who run the sessions, for a full term of 13 weeks. Medway Skylarks received a grant of £1,000 from the Aviva Community Fund last year, as a result of an application by Arthur Waters. We would like to thank all those that helped apply for these grants, and of course we would like to thank the organisations that provided them. 

Grenville Hancox, Honorary Professor of Music and Well being at the University of Kent/ Canterbury Cantata Trust, has been closely involved with developing the Skylarks movement and sees this new group as leading the way for other developments nationally.  Prof. Hancox said, "Medway Skylarks, supported by the Medway Neurological Network, will show how singing can help and compliment traditional medical approaches to combating neurological problems and is part of a campaign to secure Singing on Prescription and change our world!”

Medway Skylarks has also been invited to give a number of local performances, which they are very willing to do to help promote this therapy. 

Examples of recent performances are highlighted below including: Medway Clinical Commissioning Group AGM on 26 September 2018; wHoo Cares Afternoon Tea at High Halstow on 7 September 2018; Grain Carnival & Fete on 21 July 2018; Parkinson's UK Awareness Event, Hempstead Valley on 11 April 20128;  Medway Neurological Fair on 24 March 2018; and Medway Youth Trust Charity Fete at Gillingham Park on 15 August 2017.

If you click on the indicated pictures below you can watch videos of Medway Skylarks singing at: the Medway Clinical Commissioning Group AGMMedway Neurological Fair on 24 March 2018 and below that, the Medway Youth Trust Charity Fete on 15 August 2017.  Many thanks to Trevor Nagler for filming and editing the Neuro-Fair videos.

Medway Skylarks Perform at Medway Clinical Commissioning Group AGM, 26 September 2018


We were honoured to be invited to sing at this AGM and hence be given the opportunity to promote our singing & movement 'Sing to the Beat' therapy for neurological conditions. We had an excellent EXALTATION of Skylarks, very ably lead by choir master Trish Vella-Burrows and accompanied by John Cornwall on guitar. Our final song was 'You Raise Me Up' and a video, recorded by Louise Bungay, can be seen by clicking on the image to the right.

MCCG Clinical Chairman Dr Peter Green joins Skylarks - for a photo-shoot!!!


Yes, Dr Green (far right standing) showed a genuine interest in Medway Skylarks and joined us for a photo-shoot in front of the Medway Neurological Network stall at the AGM. Many thanks to Frank Geoghegan for the excellent photo.

Shortly afterwards we did our warm-up/ practice and before you could leave on a jet plane we were performing - the rest is history.

Medway Skylarks Perform at wHoo Cares 1940's Afternoon Tea Party - a 2018 Volunteer Recognition Event, 7 September 2018

Although short on numbers, the gallant few Skylarks kept right on to the end of the road with some wartime classics. Choir leader Trish Vella-Burrows had our audience of wHoo Cares volunteers and local residents joining in whilst they enjoyed a grand tea; no wartime rations here!!! Many thanks indeed to Trish and our guitarist John Cornwall, without whom this show would not have been possible.

Pictures: Martin Chetwood

Grain Carnival & Fete, Saturday 21 July 2018


MNN had a float in the Grain Carnival promoting the Hoo Neuro-Cafes and Medway Skylarks performed a song, written especially for this event.  See our final practice of the 'Neuro-Cafe' song, by clicking the picture to the right.

To see a video of the Skylarks singing at the fete, please go to the Neuro-cafes page.  Many thanks to John Cornwall (guitar) & Trish Vella-Burrows (choir leader) for making this possible.

Medway Skylarks

Singing their socks off for 
World Parkinson's Day
11 April 2018.

Sainsbury's, Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre  ^ >>>>>>>>

John Cornwall on Guitar


Many thanks to Graham Swan for the first 3 photos

Trish Vella-Burrows leads the choir


Judith, Olive, Doreen & Maggi lead from the front

Or for a more arty presentation, see the animated slideshow.

Medway Neuro-Fair   2018 videos    >>>>>>

Hey, Mr Miller


John Kanaka


Oh, What A Beautiful Morning


Many thanks to Nik Vella-Burrows, Choir-master & Guitarist & Trish

Hallelujah


Secret chord?  For Amazing Grace, click Here

Medway Skylarks at the Medway Youth Trust Charity Fete on 15 August 2017


Nik (Guitar) & Trish Vella-Burrows lead this merry band of minstrels performing at this event held in Gillingham Park.

Please click image to the right to see the video  >>>>>>>>>>>
BREAKING NEWS: Prof. Grenville Hancox has participated in the 'Sing to beat Parkinson's Asia Pacific Study Symposiun, 1-3 February 2018' held in Australia.  The amazing research findings have been reported by ABC News - Australia: Parkinson's disease improves with singing, study finds.  See this report, including a video, here.

Medway Skylarks are part of a study to demonstrate that Sing to the Beat can also help improve the symptoms of other neurological conditions, as well as Parkinson's Disease.

Medway Skylarks Session


Isobella from the University of Kent, Media Studies, kindly filmed a recent Skylarks Saturday morning class, and this video gives a good example of the multi-tasking singing and movement that is so beneficial - click image to the right to see the video >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
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Web design & editing: Martin Nagler

Last Update: 8 November 2018, MJN
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