About the Bromley Symphony Orchestra

President: formerly Anthony Payne (died 30th April 2021)

Vice-Presidents: Shirley & Geoff Griffiths, John & Riet Carmichael

Music Director: Adrian Brown

Leader: Andy Laing

Chair: Mike Ibbott

Treasurer: Peter Bruce

Secretary: Caroline Marwood

Librarian: Alan Magrath

Bromley Symphony Orchestra is a large and successful amateur orchestra based in south London with a reputation for interesting concerts of almost professional standard. We give four concerts a year at Langley Park Centre for the Performing Arts and occasionally a summer workshop.

We were founded in 1918 by Miss Beatrice Fowle and Miss Gwynne Kimpton, teachers at Bromley High School for Girls. Over the years we have worked with many internationally famous musicians, including Albert SammonsDennis BrainKathleen FerrierPaul Tortelier, Ralph Holmes, Hugh BeanEmma JohnsonLeslie HowardJanice WatsonSir Donald McIntyre and John Lill. Sir Adrian Boult conducted regularly in the 1940s and Norman Del Mar took over in 1952.

The orchestra seems to have been known as the Bromley and Chislehurst Orchestra around the time of World War II. We believe Leon Goossens gave his first London performance of the Vaughan Williams Oboe Concerto with the Bromley and Chislehurst Orchestra on 4 May, 1945. The first London performance was originally scheduled for the Promenade concert on 5th July 1944 but this was  cancelled due to bombings. The string section gave separate concerts at one time, and recently a chamber group known as Bromley Symphony Players have also given separate concerts.

Most members obviously come from Bromley and surrounding areas such as Beckenham, Orpington, Bickley, Chislehurst, Sidcup, West Wickham and Croydon. But quite a few do travel further – for example, we have members who come every week from Crowborough, Sutton, Blackheath and Barnet.

The Orchestra rehearses on Mondays and welcomes applications from prospective new members. Tickets can be purchased online from our tickets page.This video can also be downloaded in mp4, mobile or webm format.

There are more photos and recordings on our archive pages. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.