Maggie Hamilton

Obituary: Basil Ramsey

9:14, 19th June 2018

The founding editor of Choir & Organ, Basil Ramsey, has died at the age of 89 following a long illness.

Ramsey brought to his work his combined skills of music journalism, editing, and playing the organ – his last position was at St Giles Cripplegate, London. When it was decided to move the Church and Organ section from the back of The Musical Times and turn it into a separate magazine, Ramsey – who had worked as an editor at Novello’s – was invited to edit the newly named Choir & Organ. He commissioned some of the best writers of the day, including Wilfrid Mellers and Stephen Bicknell.

Only three years after the magazine was launched in 1993, Ramsey suffered a stroke and, despite continuing as editor for a while, eventually felt the need to withdraw from the magazine. To help other stroke sufferers, he wrote of his experiences, and turned to internet journalism, co-founding with Keith Bramich the daily classical music online magazine Music & Vision in 1999, on which he continued to work until 2006.

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