During his two years at Gresham’s Britten composed 160 pieces of music.

He kept all of his juvenilia which can be viewed via the Britten-Pears thematic catalogue (  The School Archive holds a few examples of these pieces, including Farfield, the tribute to his old boarding house, written in 1955, O Fly not PleasureI dare not ask a kiss, and O, why did e’er my thoughts aspire?


Farfield, commissioned as part of the 400 year anniversary celebrations in 1955.

Source: Grasshopper Magazine 1955, Gresham’s School Archives

Hymn to the Virgin

Hymn to the Virgin, 1930

Image reproduced courtesy of the Britten-Pears Foundation (

© 1935 Boosey & Co. Reproduced with permission of Boosey & Hawkes Music Publishers Ltd.