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England and Wales 2023 Itinerary

Overview, details, and information about lodging and stops!


  • Group Air Booking (SEE THIS POST FOR DETAILS):
    • OUTBOUND FLIGHT: Meeting at 5 PM at EWR!
    • Outbound flight: UA Flight 16 on July 2nd, Departing 9 PM from EWR, arriving 9:20 AM at LHR
    • Return flight: UA Flight 921 on July 14th, Departing 6 PM from LHR, Arriving 9:10 PM at EWR
  • If you are booking your own flight:
    • It’s not difficult to get from LHR to Streatley-on-Thames, but the accommodations are a 20-minute walk from Streatley train station, and there is no public transport or Uber available, so you’d have to walk to your accommodations.
    • If you arrive in LHR before the group flight arrives, you can hop on the bus with us!
  • Here’s the more detailed sketch of the itinerary:
    • Monday, July 3: Arrive! Meet Rachel and Jay at LHR Airport and Travel to Streatley
      • 10h30 Meet at the “Slipstream” sculpture and board the bus from LHR to Streatley
      • 12h00 Arrival in Streatley! Bus will drop off at the Swan hotel. YHA group will walk from Swan to YHA (7 minute walk!).
      • 14h00-16h30 Following lunch at The Miller of Mansfield (Swan people) and The Bull (Youth Hostel people) afternoon “jet-lag rehearsal” at St. Mary’s Church
      • 16h30-17h30 Chamber Choir Rehearsal at St. Mary’s Church
      • Evening at leisure, individual dinner (go to Reading, for example!)
    • Tuesday, July 4: Intensive Rehearsal Day at Coppa Club Swan Hotel
      • 9h00 Breakfast for all at Swan Hotel in Event Room
      • 10h00-13h00 Rehearsal
      • 13h00 Lunch at Swan Hotel
      • 14h00-16h30 Rehearsal
      • 16h30-17h30 Chamber Choir Rehearsal (change!)
      • Evening at leisure
    • Wednesday, July 5: Intensive Rehearsal Day at Swan Hotel and Concert at St. Mary’s Church
      • 8h00 Breakfast at Swan Hotel in Event Room
      • 9h00-12h00 Rehearsal at Swan Hotel
      • 12h00 Lunch at Swan Hotel
      • 13h00-14h30 Rehearsal at Swan Hotel
      • 15h00-15h45 Chamber Choir at St. Mary’s Church
      • 16h00-17h30 Full Rehearsal at St. Mary’s Church
      • 17h30-19h00 Break for dinner at leisure and change into concert attire
      • 19h30 Evening concert at St. Mary’s Church
    • Thursday, July 6: Travel Day- Coventry Cathedral and Llangollen
      • 8h00 Busses leave for Coventry Cathedral (Bye, Streatley!)
      • 10h00 am Coventry Cathedral 60 minute Tour & Pop-up Concert (5-10 minutes)
      • 12h00 Leave Coventry Cathedral
      • 13h00 Lunch break
      • 14h00 Travel to Llangollen, Wales for the CHOIR OF THE WORLD competition.
      • 16h00 Parade of Nations Ceremony
      • Check-in to AirBnbs (Llangollen) and to Mill/Moxy (Chester-45 min drive from Llangollen)- possible street concert in Chester!
    • Friday, July 7: Pre-competition Concert Day
      • Morning at leisure in Chester (“Moxy” breakfast- 6-10 am, “The Mill” breakfast- need to be scheduled at front desk, staggered times from 7-10 am)
      • 10h00 Bus leaves Chester for Llangollen
      • 11h30 Rehearsal at St. Collen’s Church
      • 13h00 Concert at St. Collen’s Church in Llangollen
      • 14h00 Bus leaves Llangollen for Chester Cathedral
      • 15h30 Concert at Chester Cathedral
      • Evening at leisure- BE CALM! Competition tomorrow!
    • Saturday, July 8: CHOIR OF THE WORLD competition and final rounds
      • 7h00 Bus leaves for Llangollen
      • 9h00 competition spot
      • 15h00 competition spot
      • Final Round?!
      • 22h00 Choir splits- Byrd Choir to Hythe, everyone else returns to Chester
    • Sunday, July 9: Byrd Choir and rejoining of forces
      • Group 1: Byrd Choir performs Byrd Mass at Morning service at St. Leonard Church, Hythe
        • 9h00 Rehearsal, 10h30 Service
      • Group 2: Departs Chester 10h00
        • Travel to Hythe (our home for the remainder of the tour!)
    • Monday, July 10: Relaxing Day in Hythe! Hotel changes for some.
      • 15h45 Meet at Steam Train for a 16h00 departure More information about this adorable and historic train here!
      • 17h15 dinner at Ales by the Rails
      • Generally for Hythe- We’re the choir in residence at JAM on the Marsh festival – including a tribute to Morten Lauridsen for his 80th birthday as coordinated by Paul Mealor.
    • Tuesday, July 11: A Day in Canterbury and Folkestone
      • 9h00 Bus departs for Canterbury
      • 12h00 Concert at Canterbury Cathedral
      • 14h00 Depart Canterbury
      • 18h00 Bus returns to Hythe
    • Wednesday, July 12: Rehearsal and Masterclass
      • Morning at leisure
      • 13h00-17h00 Rehearsal and Masterclass with Nicholas Cleobury at St. Leonard’s Church in Hythe
      • Rehearsal and Masterclass
    • Thursday, July 13: Recording Session! Final Concert!
      • 11h00-13h00 Rehearsal and Recording session at St. Leonard’s Church
      • 19h30 Concert at JAM on the Marsh
    • Friday, July 14:
      • 10h00 board bus to LHR

We have 3 separate stops on this trip! Each stop has its own places to stay, which differ depending on which option you chose (basic or upgraded) along with our concerted effort to house you with preferred roommates.

Here are those places!

YHA Streatley-On-Thames

A comfortable Victorian house five minutes’ walk from one of the prettiest stretches of the River Thames, YHA Streatley-on-Thames makes a great base for enjoying plenty of nearby attractions.

We have the ENTIRE HOSTEL booked for our stay! You won’t be there with strangers–only DCS folks.

Perks: Includes Wi-Fi, kitchen access, and access to all rooms in the hostel.

The hostel
Shared room
Private room

Coppa Swan Hotel, Streatley

On a wide stretch of the River Thames in the Chiltern hills, The Swan at Streatley is a converted 17th-century inn with a terrace right at the water’s edge. Stay in guest rooms overlooking the gardens and water meadows, enjoy outdoor yoga, go paddleboarding, head off with a picnic, or just watch the river go by.

The hotel
The Swan at Streatley, hotel, function rooms, riverside, river Thames, bedrooms

There are two lodging possibilities in Chester.

Moxy Hotel, Chester

“Stylishly designed, understated hotel rooms with well-appointed, functional space.”


The Mill Hotel and Spa

“The MILL is part of the rich history, the fabric and the personality of Chester. We’re not like a faceless chain hotel, we’re like you: we’ve got our own unique character. We love the fact that when you discover the MILL, you’ve found something different, somewhere special. And we’ll welcome you like one of the family.”

This hotel has a swimming pool, gym, and restaurant, and looks out over the canal!

Three AirBnBs

Hythe was particularly nightmarish for booking as we wanted everyone to be in walking distance of the village and the performance venue, but being high season in a small beach resort, we had to get super creative.

Some of you will be in AirBNBs…

You might have part or all of your stay in the big hotel where I had to ply over to enter my PIN…

Hythe Imperial Hotel

“Situated on Kent’s coastline, we are a 4-star independently owned hotel in Hythe. A Victorian building steeped in history dating back to 1880.

Or you might be in one of two cute little inns right in the middle of town…

The Red Lion Hotel

“The Red Lion offers comfortable en suite rooms a cozy traditional bar with free WiFi, free parking, and flexible check-in times.

Each individually decorated en suite room has a TV and tea/coffee-making facilities.

The Red Lion Hotel in Hythe offers a wide selection of lagers and local ales, as well as spirits and an extensive wine list. There is also a secluded garden area with a gravelled area with seating and a large grassed area beyond.”

Or The Old Post Office Guesthouse…

We are going to be rehearsing and singing in a lot of fun and exciting places on this trip! Here are some highlights.

We will be rehearsing in the Coppa Swan Hotel in Streatley for the beginning portion of our trip. We will also be eating here, as meals are included in the hotel while we are using it as a rehearsal space (Tuesday and Wednesday)!

The competition will take place in Llangollen, Wales! This is an adorable and charming town and definitely worth exploring.

We will potentially be doing a concert in the historic Coventry Cathedral. This building is a haunting piece of history.

The consecration of the new cathedral is important to music history, because Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem was written to commemorate its reopening.

We might do a concert in the historic Canterbury Cathedral in the charming town of Canterbury, England.