Francis Duckworth

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Born: 25 De­cem­ber 1862

Died: 16 Au­gust 1941


Francis Duckworth grew up next door to the Wesleyan Chapel, the musical and social centre of the village where (in the absence of an organ) 4 of the extended family played in the orchestra. As a boy, hearing an uncle sing ‘Jesus shall reign…’, Francis is said to have resolved to compose a new tune for such mighty words. Left motherless at 12 years old, he had to leave the village school and contribute his labour to the family grocery business. Eventually he followed his older brothers to nearby Colne, where he settled as a wholesale grocer. There he was organist of Albert Road Methodist chapel for nearly 50 years. Apart from the business, music became his life; one highlight was a journey to London to buy an organ for the church. Back at home he composed RIMINGTON in 1904, which was one of his 18 tunes published in the Rimington Hymnal, it was also sung by a mas­sive con­gre­ga­tion of Bri­tish troops on the Mount of Ol­ives af­ter the sur­ren­der of Je­ru­sa­lem dur­ing World War I.

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