Frederic Myers’ long poem ‘St Paul’ ends with these verses which have been taken for use as an Advent hymn; they contain the promise of the return and gathering up of all things in Christ. In the early years of the twentieth century, R R Terry made a huge contribution to the music of the Roman Catholic Church in Britain, and when he was organist of Westminster Cathedral helped all the churches to value more fully their heritage of earlier English music. He wrote this tune for the wedding hymn ‘O perfect love, all human thought transcending’ at the suggestion of his uncle, Lord Runciman. Its connection with the present words is far more successful, with the note of exultation in the words taken up so well in the music. The tune is named after a wood on Lord Runciman’s estate at Doxford, Northumberland, some seven miles north of Alnwick.
from notes by Alan Luff © 1999