Thursday, 16 September 2021

Teacher celebrates 25 years of music group

A WOMAN is celebrating 25 years of the children’s music group that she started in her living room.

A WOMAN is celebrating 25 years of the children’s music group that she started in her living room.

Piano teacher Sarah Birch founded the Teddies Music Group in February 1991 at her home in Reading Road, Shiplake.

At first she had only five children but the group became popular quickly and she needed a bigger venue.

She approached Henley Baptist Church in Market Place, where she and her husband Stephen were baptised, and the then pastor Frank Payne agreed the group could have four half-hour sessions back-to-back.

Mrs Birch has also held sessions at the DaySpring Christian Centre, also in Market Place, before it became the d:two centre and at the Shiplake church rooms.

She now runs two 45-minute singalong sessions a week for groups of up to 20 under-fives. Mrs Birch, 53, whose own two children are now in their twenties, said: “A friend suggested the idea to me. I was very nervous and lacking in confidence but I thought ‘why not, I’ve got nothing to lose’.

“I didn’t see it as a job. I love being able to express myself and being able to engage with the children.

“I also wanted to make a difference — mums can make friends, it helps the church and it gives the children confidence. People have come to me and said, ‘your music group has been a lifeline for me’. It’s precious time spent with your child. When mothers lack confidence the singing and dancing breaks down the barriers.

“I don’t use any technical stuff, I use my voice, so what you see with me is what you get. I love it, I can’t imagine not doing it but I never thought I’d be doing it for 25 years! In another 25 I’ll be 78 and I’d still be doing it.”



More News:

POLL: Have your say