It is in everyone’s best interests to be honest and open. I refer to the controversy surrounding the sudden announcement, from the Dean, that Dr Andrew Lumsden had resigned and was going with grateful thanks for all the work he has done (Chronicle, May 2).

At face value this is just a very sad announcement from Dr Lumsden recognised as one of the top Directors of Cathedral Music in the country. But on reflection, would such an eminent musician announce his resignation mid-term knowing that his action would leave the cathedral with just one sub organist. Further, would he resign without any personal comment, give up his house, his salary, the cathedral choir and that wonderful Willis organ that has only just come back into use after a £1.1million restoration?

He will be the second organist at the cathedral to have ‘left’ recently for no apparent reason. Interestingly, neither he, nor his assistant who suddenly ‘disappeared’ in 2021, has made a public statement about their leaving. Could it just be that, rather than resigning of their own free will, they were put in an impossible position and had no option?

There is much concern within the cathedral community that all is not as it initially appears, and the fact that no one at the cathedral will answer any questions about these sudden resignations, claiming the reasons are entirely confidential and any disclosure would break HR codes.

Further, there has been considerable, mainly negative, correspondence on social media. At a recent community meeting at the Cathedral, the Dean and members of Chapter, with one noticeable absence, refused to confirm or deny that these negative comments were nothing more than unfounded rubbish. With no clarification or explanation of why these resignations took place, I can only assume that the two organists concerned were given no option other than to resign with some financial settlement and a gagging order.  It is a shame that the cathedral authorities will not deny this hypothesis.

Paul Wing,

Mortimer Close,

Headbourne Worthy