Clubs and Societies

Display desk case


Sheet music found in the roof of 20 High Street Petersfield, formerly the White Hart Inn, reproduction, 1710 – 1750

In the 1700s, the White Hart on the High Street was Petersfield’s main public meeting place and the area’s primary entertainment venue. This music was written for violin and would have formed part of an orchestral suite. Imagine local people dancing as the music played in the background.


Music stand owned by Kathleen Merritt

Gustav Holst wrote 'The Planets' suite. Ralph Vaughan Williams collected English folk songs. Local musician Kathleen Merritt conducted for the BBC and founded two orchestras. What do they have in common? They all conducted at the Petersfield Musical Festival.

Local arts and crafts furnituremaker Edward Barnsley made this music stand for Kathleen Merritt.


Ceremonial sashes of the Ancient Order of Foresters

Like the Freemasons, the Ancient Order of Foresters held meetings and processions filled with ceremony and ritual. They were a ‘friendly society’, set up to support members in sickness or death long before state welfare. They also provided an opportunity to socialise.

The logo on the sashes illustrates that women were admitted as members.


Conductor’s baton owned by Michael Hurd


Music stand owned by Michael Hurd

To this day, schoolchildren across England can be heard singing Michael Hurd’s compositions. From his home in West Liss, he wrote music for orchestras, choirs, films and plays. His work took him around the world, but his base was Petersfield, where he conducted for the Musical Festival and Operatic Society.