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International Summer School (ISS)

A wonderful week experiencing worship through music from the 14th to the 21st century, with excellent tuition from inspirational leaders. A pilgrimage theme runs through the week, so we shall visit and sing in amazing buildings guided by musical and liturgical specialists. We are offering a comfortable, homely residential base in the countryside outside Norwich; opportunity to meet and learn from composers Cecilia McDowall and Joel Payne in person; adequate time for learning on-site in pleasant, bright rooms; cathedral choral worship shared with the RSCM’s top youth choir, the MYC; fellowship and friendship with like-minded people from around the world.

A specialist team of seven RSCM tutors, including Helen Bent who will lead the pilgrimage day by coach to the East Anglian Angel-roof and other (historically) significant churches, will be available to offer really useful advice and workshops. There will be options for topic-choices, and at all times you would have the freedom to opt in or out of the programme according to your choice. Practical topics will include conducting, organ-playing, band-leading skills, vocal coaching, composition/arrangement, good working practices for church musicians, and how to teach musical literacy. Debates and forum opportunities will happen in the evenings and the days will begin and end with worship in a wide variety of styles.

There are limited places available for non-residential students whilst the majority will benefit from living and working on-site for the week. RSCM members receive a discounted price on full-week tickets, and we offer unbeatable value for money in all the above plus dinner, bed and breakfast (and some lunches) in pleasant surroundings.

The International Summer School 2019 is supported by


Start Date: 2019-08-05
End Date: 2019-08-11
Venue: Belsey Bridge Conference Centre
Postcode: NR35 2DZ
Entry Fee: see ticket prices in 'Further Information' below
Option 1: RSCM member residential en-suite (20% deposit) [two en-suite rooms left, please await a confirmation email from that you have successfully booked one]
Option 1 Cost: £166
Option 2: RSCM member residential non-en-suite (20% deposit)
Option 2 Cost: £148
Option 3: RSCM member non-residential (20% deposit)
Option 3 Cost: £88
Option 4: Non-member residential en-suite (20% deposit) [two en-suite rooms left, please await a confirmation email from that you have successfully booked one]
Option 4 Cost: £208
Option 5: Non-member non-en-suite (20% deposit)
Option 5 Cost: £190
Option 6: Non-member non-residential (20% deposit)
Option 6 Cost: £106
Option 7: Day ticket (Tuesday) (20% deposit)
Option 7 Cost: £15
Option 8: Day ticket (Wednesday) (20% deposit)
Option 8 Cost: £15
Option 9: Day ticket (Thursday) (20% deposit)
Option 9 Cost: £15
Option 10: Day ticket (Friday) (20% deposit)
Option 10 Cost: £15
Age Restriction: over 18
Contact Name: RSCM ISS
Contact Tel: 01722 424844
Contact Email:
contact us

Terms and Conditions of booking

Terms and Conditions

Terms and Conditions apply to this course as follows:
All fees are payable in pounds sterling.
Fees are subject to change only in the event of circumstances beyond the control of the RSCM, including changes in taxation and exceptional surcharges imposed by suppliers.
A deposit of 20% of the full fee is required on booking.
Deposits are non-refundable (except in the event of the course being cancelled by the RSCM), and cover administration costs.
The balance of the full fee is due 10 weeks before the start of all courses, except where stated otherwise. After these dates, the RSCM reserves the right to re-allocate any places for which the fee has not been paid in full. In the event of cancellation by the applicant:
– more than the stated number of weeks before the start of the course, amounts paid in advance, except for the deposit, will be refunded.
– less than the stated number of weeks before the start of the course a partial refund will be considered if the place can be re-allocated.
In the case of cancellation by the RSCM, fees paid will be refunded in full.
The RSCM cannot take responsibility for other costs incurred when the place is cancelled whether by the applicant or by the RSCM. For this reason, we strongly recommend that you take out your own travel insurance.
The RSCM reserves the right at any stage to refuse an application without stating the reason.
If a tutor or lecturer is absent, the RSCM will provide a suitable replacement.
The RSCM reserves the right to alter other features of the course, including venues and facilities.
You must notify the RSCM of any special access, mobility, medical or dietary requirements when you first book to attend if these will affect your ability to participate fully. The RSCM will endeavour to help where possible.
All adults on residential courses with under 18s will need to comply with the RSCM’s Safeguarding policy and procedures.
Any dependent adult student must be assisted by a full-time carer paying their own costs. The RSCM is unable to accept responsibility for the supervision of dependent adults in the care of students attending courses.
Pets are not allowed. It may be possible to accommodate assistance dogs if advised in advance.

Further Information

Teachers and presenters
Ticket prices

Belsey Bridge

Belsey Bridge is set in 20 acres of grounds on the Norfolk/Suffolk border and is an ideal base from which to explore the region. There are comfortable bedrooms in a range of sizes, both en-suite and non-en-suite, with a number of accessible rooms on the ground floor.

A chapel and meeting rooms are all on-site, along with recreational facilities and a small shop for essentials. Click here for a virtual tour of the facilities.

Content highlights

Content highlights for each day include…

Monday – keynote speech by the Director; illustrated talk by Jon Cannon, expert on the medieval period, to set context for excursions later in the week

Tuesday – day in Norwich; organ masterclass; shrine of Mother Julian; visit to both cathedrals; devotional ecumenical service; Cecilia McDowall (composer) and Joel Payne (songwriter) join us this evening

Wednesday – workshops based at Belsey Bridge; Silas Wollston joins us to coach Early repertoire

Thursday – all-day excursion visiting the angel-roof churches, led by Revd Helen Bent and Silas Wollston

Friday – conducting masterclass with Adrian Lucas and the Millennium Youth Choir; visit to the Red House (Britten) and Evensong at local church

Saturday – optional free day or excursions including Walsingham/Norwich; small-churches event led by Miles Quick and Rosemary Field; gala dinner

Sunday – Choral Eucharist at Norwich Cathedral shared with MYC

Please note that all aspects of the programme are subject to change.

Teachers and presenters

  • Jon Cannon
  • Cecilia McDowall
  • Joel Payne
  • Silas Wollston
  • RSCM staff presenters
    • Hugh Morris
    • Rosemary Field
    • Revd Canon Helen Bent
    • Miles Quick
    • Adrian Lucas

Please note that all presenters are subject to change.


During the week, there will be the opportunity to visit a number of places of interest (please note that some trips take place at the same time as each other). These include:

Norwich Cathedral (Anglican)

The Cathedral of St John the Baptist (Roman Catholic)

Shrine of Mother Julian

A selection of angel-roof churches

Red House

Aldeburgh Parish Church

Walsingham shrines (Catholic)  and Anglican

Please note that all aspects of the programme are subject to change.

Ticket prices

RSCM member Non-member
Residential en-suite (only one left!) £830 £1040
Residential non-en-suite £740 £950
Non-residential (full week) £440 £530
Single day tickets (Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri) £75 per day £75 per day

A deposit of 20% is required on booking.

Please note: there are only two en-suite rooms left, please await a confirmation email from that you have successfully booked one.

To take advantage of the discounted prices, why not become a member?
RSCM member tickets are available to UK Individual/Student members, and members of affiliated churches/choirs. They are also available to anyone who is a member of one of the overseas branches of the RSCM (as defined by the relevant branch). We reserve the right to check membership status with the relevant body before confirming the place.


Q.  What does the cost include?

A. Residential tickets include all tuition and resources featured in the timetable plus accommodation for the week (en-suite or non-en-suite, depending on your preference and availability) and meals taken in Belsey Bridge and on some excursions. Meals taken when ‘out-and-about’, away from Belsey Bridge, are not included in the ticket cost as it will be easier for you to make your own arrangements. Non-residential tickets (week tickets and day tickets) include all tutorial aspects between the stated times, coach travel from Belsey Bridge to/from excursion venues and any admission charges. Apart from dinner on Friday, no food is included, but lunch and dinner bookings when meals are taken at Belsey Bridge can be negotiated separately.

Q.  What are the accommodation options?

A. Both en-suite and non-en-suite rooms are available and prices are per person. Have a look at the ‘Further information’ section for more details and photos.

Q.  How do I get to Belsey Bridge?

A. There is plenty of parking space if you are coming by car. Belsey Bridge is about 12 miles from Norwich so we will be arranging a minibus shuttle from the train station on Monday. The ISS ends after the Eucharist in Norwich Cathedral on Sunday and the station is about 15 minutes’ walk away. There are direct flights to Norwich International Airport from Amsterdam if it makes sense to change there rather than fly into one of the London airports.

Q.  Is there any financial support available?

A. Three full-fee scholarships are offered for RSCM members based in the UK who can demonstrate need, and who fulfil the criteria for impactful study in positions of leadership. Please email for more details.

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