Dedication of the Bath Abbey Psalter on Sunday 12 September, 3.30pm

On September 12th the Bath Abbey Psalter, dedicated to the memory of Derek Cardy 1930-2020, former member of the Abbey choir and organ pupil of Earnest Maynard will be blessed and commissioned at a special service of Choral Evensong. Delyth Cardy, his widow, said ‘Derek loved this church and was particularly fond of the Psalms. One of his favourites was Psalm 9 ‘I will praise thee O Lord with my whole heart’ Ps 9’

We are very grateful to Delyth for supporting this project and are delighted that it will be dedicated to Derek Cardy. The new books have arrived and have already been installed in the choir desks in the fabulous new Song School.

Huw Williams, Director of Music, said “Completing a psalter for the Abbey choirs was one of my projects during the covid lockdown. The Abbey choir sings psalms in a glorious translation by Myles Coverdale (1488 – 1569) which was completed as part of the translation of the Bible in 1535, which some people find a bit old fashioned nowadays. But singers throughout the ages have been inspired by these poetic phrases which sing really well and cathedrals and choral institutions which sing psalms regularly all use this translation which is part of the Book of Common Prayer. The Abbey didn’t have a complete psalter for the choir, and as the psalms are often called the ‘musician’s handbook’ I thought this was a worthwhile project to be getting on with.”

The Revd Canon Guy Bridgewater, Rector, writes “There is a well known saying of St. Augustine that “to sing is to pray twice”. By that I think he meant that the fervency of our prayer is heightened by music – and certainly that holds gloriously true with the singing of these ancient prayer-poems, that we call the Psalms.

Choristers past and present have inspired and deepened the worship of Bath Abbey by singing Psalms on this site, for well over a thousand years. One such faithful and much loved gentleman of the Abbey choir is Derek Cardy – in whose loving memory this new Psalter, for our worship in the 21st Century, has been prepared by Huw Williams, our Director of Music.

I commend this precious book most warmly. May it inspire singers and congregation alike to rejoice and “pray twice” together … as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end, Amen.”

Do please join us at this special Evensong – tickets are available from or by calling the Abbey office on 01225 422 462.