Oxford Welsh Male Voice Choir

Founded in 1928...

The Choir

Helen and the 'boys'

Musical Director


Helen Swift

Helen Swift MD

Helen Swift (soprano) started her singing career in Liverpool in the National Youth Choir of Great Britain at 14 and after early success in the BBC Choirgirl of the Year competition, she then went onto win a choral scholarship to Clare College Cambridge where she studied music.

She studied opera in London and Dublin and now studies with Michelle Wegwart. She has performed in many of the major concert venues including Grace Cathedral (San Francisco) and Domplatz (Salzburg). Opera roles include Pamina in the Magic Flute (Magdela Opera Group) and Oberto in Alcina (Cambridge Handel Opera Group). She has worked with many distinguished artists, including Sir David Willcocks, Stephen Cleobury and John Rutter. She has appeared as a soloist on many CD’S including Lesley Garrett’s, comic Lee Evans and film scores for Max Richter.

Helen is the Musical Director of Towcester Choral Society, Thame Choral Society, Oxford Welsh Male Voice Choir and the Singing for Pleasure Choir in London and teaches singing at Rugby School. Recent performances have been Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Creation and Karl Jenkins’ Armed Man.

The Music Team

Tim Croston (Accompanist and Deputy MD)

Tim Croston

Tim was a church organist in the parish of St Michael’s-on-Wyre, Lancashire, while still at school. He has a Master’s degree in Physics from the University of Oxford, and a Master’s in Composition and Sonic Art from Oxford Brookes University.

Tim’s ability to play in a wide variety of musical styles has seen him perform across the UK, Italy, Holland and Germany. His groups have recorded several sessions for BBC Radio.

Tim is currently principal pianist for both the Oxford Gospel Choir and the Oxford Welsh Male Voice Choir.

As well as a pianist, Tim is a deputy organist at St Mary’s Church, Iffley village. He also plays in a bluegrass band, and is a sought-after brass player and music teacher.


Andrew Patterson (Accompanist and Organist)

andrew patterson

Andrew Patterson MA, ARCO is organist and deputy accompanist for the Oxford Welsh choir,  resident organist at Blenheim Palace Woodstock and Director of Music at St Giles Church, Oxford. 

He regularly performs organ recitals at Blenheim and has played in churches and cathedrals for services and recitals across Europe,  including St Peters in Rome and Southwark, Coventry and Wells cathedrals in the UK.

At Blenheim he has performed for many state and formal occasions, including visits by current and past USA presidents and members of the royal family. Andrew learnt to play the organ at Taunton School, Somerset,   and at Clare College Cambridge, where he read engineering and electrical sciences. 

By day Andrew works for German company Siemens,  looking after a business in automotive electronics and software.  He lives in Oxfordshire and has three grown-up daughters who also enjoy keyboard playing.



Malcolm Hookham

Malcolm (on the right) at the 100 years of Morris celebrations.


Vice Presidents

Wilhelmina Church and Penelope Glen