On June 11th 2019, the Cambrensis family joined hundreds of people at Gilgal Baptist Church, Porthcawl, to celebrate the life and mourn the loss of the legend who is Anne Brown. Subsequently, on Saturday 26th October we held a special tribute concert for Anne at All Nations Centre, Cardiff entitled ‘A Life Well Lived’
Anne Brown’s involvement with Cambrensis went back almost 37 years, during which time she had many roles: Alto section leader, Assistant Music Director, Administrator of Cambrensis Ministries (supporting first Kelvin Thomas and then Jeff Howard as their ‘right hand woman’ and ensuring that the many facets of Cambrensis ran smoothly), founder and Music Director of the Cambrensis Junior Singers (the Cambrats) and Music Director of the Promise of Christmas Youth Choir.
There were no half measures with Anne. She gave total commitment to everything she did, undertaking every task and role with great energy, enthusiasm and her wonderful sense of humour. She was, and remains, an inspiration to so many people, young and old. As her husband James said at her funeral, Anne was full of ‘life, love and laughter’. Anne was a great friend to so many people in so many walks of life and over so many years. She had the ability to nurture, support and counsel as well as being able to gently coax people into involvement in her many activities.
Anne wrote and arranged many songs. Several of her songs were written for children, including the much loved, jazzy song ‘The Angels’ Party’ based on the Parables of the Lost in Luke 15. She also wrote and produced a number of Christmas musicals which have been used in schools and churches up and down the country and even abroad. However, she was not just a composer of children’s songs: her very moving songs ‘Touched by a Loving Hand’ and ‘Who is this Man?’ have been sung in many venues across the country.
Underpinning everything Anne did was her love of her Lord and Saviour, whom she served so faithfully over so many years. We all miss her deeply but have the assurance she is with the Lord.
At the Tribute Concert we had a tremendous turn out of people whose lives Anne had touched in some way or other in many spheres, some dating back from many years. Musical items were provided by Cambrensis Choir, the St David’s Praise Choir, Cambrensis Orchestra, the Concert Band and the Cambrats. Also taking part were Côr Dysgwyr Porthcawl (Porthcawl Welsh Learners Choir), a choir which Anne had formed and directed since 2016 and now under the direction of Dr Jan Kletta. Verbal tributes were given by Kelvin Thomas, Rev Peter Idris Taylor who was a founder member and is Chairman of the Trustees, Jeff Howard, Emily Witts, Cheryl Thomas and Irene Collier who spoke for the Welsh Choir. The evening was memorable, emotional and we felt we had given, and enabled all those there to give, due honour to our very dear Anne whose legacy and influence will ensure that her contribution to the life and ministry of Cambrensis will not be forgotten. We move on into the future praying that all of us in the family that is Cambrensis can build on this legacy and bring glory to God in so doing.