Friday 24 November 2023

Magical Salford


It takes our breath away as we walk into the main room at GoChurch, Media City.  This space is even bigger that the room next door, the one in which we rehearse every Tuesday evening. From the outside the building looks quite industrial, but as you walk through the doors – wow!

There’s a Christmas tree, of course.  Lights stream down from a central point in the ceiling and make the space look a little like a huge circus tent. The lighting is atmospheric. Tables are prettily laid ready to present guests with a two course meal. And the diners are being served prosecco as they arrive. Christmas music plays in the background.   

It’s so appropriate that it looks like magic because the real magic happens at the hands of the invited guests.  This is a celebration meal for the people of the Salford Food Bank. In fact, it’s more than magic; it’s a miracle. The work they do is so important.    

We have time for a quick warm-up next door, and then it’s into the main room and we become the background music. We start off with a couple of Christmas carols and then we sing along to what we call our Christmas karaoke tape – it has such old favourites as Jingle Bell Rock, Frosty the Snowman and Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree. And oh yes, we spot one or two people joining in.  You must be local. Are you free on Tuesdays between 7.00 and 9.00 pm? Why not come along and see if we suit you? It really is fun, you know.

Soon it’s time for the meal to begin and we move away from the stage as they all say Grace  and then eat.

“There’s plenty of food,” says one of our hosts. “Do have some.”

I enjoy a delicious vegetarian chilli with rice.

Those who have come by public transport can even enjoy a glass of prosecco or Buck’s Fizz.

Then it’s time for us to sing again and this time we’re fully a cappella. There are the well-known carols – O Come Al Ye Faithfull, Away in a Manger, Once in Royal David’s City and O Little Town of Bethlehem. There are also a couple of our favourites: Carol of the Bells and Coventry Carol, as well as the more secular Holly Jolly and White Christmas.Amongst others.

A sort of Christmas uniform has evolved. Some of us wear jumpers and Christmas lights. Others stay with the all black but liven it up with our custom purple Christmas hats, tinsel and more lights. 


Thank you for having us, Salford Food Bank.  We had fun. We trust you did too.