Lost Elgar manuscript and letters discovered

Charlotte Smith16th Feb 2012
A lost Elgar manuscript has been discovered in a council building (photo: Tully A lost Elgar manuscript has been discovered in a council building (photo: Tully Potter Collection)

A manuscript by Edward Elgar dating back almost 90 years has been found among ‘dusty’ papers in a council building. Staff from Charnwood Borough Council in Loughborough unearthed the original score - composed in 1923 for the opening of the Carillon Tower in the town’s Queen’s Park - along with letters from the composer and a film reel believed to show the opening of the tower. The items have been valued at £10,000.

The work, titled Carillon Chimes, was written for carillon, an instrument comprised of at least 23 bells and played with keyboard and pedals. Although there are copies of the work, the original score had not been seen since it was donated to the council in the 1950s.

‘This is a vitally important piece of Charnwood's history which has been tucked away safely for too long, said Paul Harley from the council. ‘I'm thrilled that this beautiful piece of work by one of Britain's finest composers has been rediscovered, particularly in this Olympic year when the eyes of the world focus on all things British.’

Charnwood Council hopes to place the items on public display in the near future.

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