John Shipley, Diversity & Inclusion Team John played in punk bands in his youth but, other than that, had never sung or performed in public until 2008 when he moved from London to Somerset. He was introduced to barbershop by one of his new neighbours, who invited him along to a rehearsal of The Rivertones in Taunton. He would normally have said, “No thanks,” as, although The Rivertones are a great bunch of guys, John had never considered chorus life would be for him. But, keen to make friends in a new town, he went along and loved it from the first chord. He remains indebted to The Rivertones for his start in barbershop and for two years of fun, laughter and music. Since 2010 he has sung with The Great Western Chorus of Bristol where he has been Bass Section Manager, Operations Manager and, since 2017, Chairman. John has spent his whole working life in social care, primarily in the Charity sector working with the single homeless and rough sleepers. He currently works for Somerset County Council, co-ordinating their accommodation and support for homeless 16 to 25 year olds.