In March 1933, 35 villagers from Trelawnyd, formerly known as Newmarket, formed a choir to compete at the village Eisteddfod. Within a few months, it grew to 50 members, and the local schoolmaster, William Humphreys (father of novelist Emyr Humphreys) became its conductor. It flourished mainly as a competitive choir until 1939, with notable successes at Dolgellau, Llanrwst and the famous Lewis' eisteddfod at Liverpool.
Throughout the war years the books never closed although the choir lay dormant, and May 14th 1946 was clearly another milestone when 24 men decided to revive the choir, and its first rehearsal was held at the village school on May 28th. It is largely to the credit of these men that the choir exists today.
Appointed conductor, and to remain so until 1955 was the well-known musician and schoolmaster T. Elford Roberts.
Newmarket Choir soon grew to 60 voices, and in the golden age of competition, clashed with such famous choirs as Morriston Orpheus, Pendyrus, Treorchy, Rhos, Penrhyn and Alun choir of Mold. The period also saw the first of many broadcasts for the BBC from Bangor, one notable occasion being the coronation of H.M. the Queen.
Elford Roberts Conductor 1946-1955
In 1955 local scoolmaster Neville Owen took over the helm until 1969. Somewhat of a musical martinet, he was always insistent on musical accuracy. Under his baton the choir won the National for the first time in 1967 at Bala. A choir of 82 singers had to be trimmed to 70 for this concert.
A former chorister, Dr. Goronwy Wynne became our fourth conductor, 1970-81. He brought a new dimension, leading to an increase in numbers to a record 110, a further National win at Ruthin in 1973, near misses at Chief Choral level, and a highly creditable runners-up position out of 56 entries in the BBC's first Choir of the Year contest. He also bought a new emphasis on style and stage presentation. Many recall his gimmick of leaving the stage before the end of 'Myfanwy'. This was also the time of broadening horizons and of memorable trips to Scotland, Ireland, Germany, Holland and Canada, a far cry indeed from the adventurous trip to Mold by charabanc which the 'old hands' still recall.
Goronwy Wynne with the trophy at the 1973 Eisteddfod
Geraint Roberts was only 23 when he succeeded Dr Goronwy Wynne to become the choir's fifth conductor and held the post for a remarkable 34 years.
During his time as musical director he created a choir with an enviable record winning the Royal National Eisteddfod on no fewer than five occasions.
Over the years Geraint was much in demand as an adjudicator and as a conductor of major events and singing festivals. He also achieved notable successes on S4C television conducting the North Wales Rugby Choir and the Rhos and District Mixed Choir. He has also led the St. David's Day celebrations in Melbourne Australia on more than one occasion.