Peter Readings 17.12.1919 - 19.01.2018
Peter Readings could have been called ‘Mr Woking Music Festival’ or ‘Mr Music Man of Woking’. For many, many years he was a great champion of producing a platform for local musicians, especially young players, to perform publicly to their peers and audiences and to receive constructive criticism from qualified music adjudicators.
The success of Woking Music Festival and, subsequently, the Woking Young Musician of the Year Competition is largely due to Peter’s determination to make this happen (with the enthusiastic support of his late wife, Frances). I was personally associated with WMF from around 1977, joining the committee in 1980. Peter was chairman of the committee then until he retired and I took over in 1995. Peter then became President of Woking Music Festival.
In 1979 Peter, together with local councillor Gordon Brown, had the idea of picking out the best young performers from the Music Festival to compete for the title Woking Young Musician of the Year. This was a very small affair to begin with but over the years it steadily grew to become the very prestigious competition that it is today, thanks to their vision of what could be achieved.
Peter was a kind and lovely man. He has certainly lived a very long and fulfilled life but his passing really does mark the end of an era. Not only do the many musicians (some internationally famous now) who passed through his hands have much to be grateful for but all of us who worked with him and called him a friend will miss him very much and be very glad that we knew him.
May he Rest in Peace.
Woking Music Festival