This album was created to present an anthology of songs from Hampshire sources, past and present, performed by local choirs. The performers are both community choirs from the Test Valley. The recording was carried out in the Church of St. Mary the Less, Chilbolton, nr. Stockbridge in Hampshire.
Local choirs play an important part in spreading local songs and keeping them alive. The project was sponsored by Test Valley Borough Council, Hampshire County Council, Traditional Arts Projects and Southern Arts. The performers are both community choirs from the Test Valley. The recording was carried out in the Church of St. Mary the Less, Chilbolton, nr. Stockbridge in Hampshire. The two choirs recorded here, the Andover Museum Loft Singers and the Broughton Village Choir, are both situated in the Test Valley district of Hampshire , between Andover and Romsey and usually perform for seasonal and other occasions in their own communities. They have developed a style of harmony which owes much to old traditions, both secular and sacred. Arrangements, either three- or four-part, echo the style of West Gallery church music, with its fugues, canons and responding phrases. Influence can also be heard from harmony singing exemplified by rural traditions stretching from the Copper family of Sussex to the Keld singers of Swaledale. All the songs on the album have close connections with Hampshire.