||21 October 1908
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Howard was the son of Stanley Ferguson, a member of the well known Ferguson linen family of Banbridge. Both his parents encouraged their sonís musical talent. When he entered the annual Belfast Musical Competition he won a prize. The adjudicator, Harold Samuel, the pianist and Bach specialist, persuaded the Fergusons that Howard should go to London in 1924 to study privately with him.
He went to Westminster School and, at 16, on to the Royal College of Music where he was taught harmony, counterpoint and composition by R O Morris and conducting by Malcolm Sargent. When World War II broke out, he joined the Royal Air Force. After 18 months he was released to work full-time on the National Gallery concerts along with Dame Myra Hess.
Fergusonís own published music is limited to 20 compositions. His masterpieces, Amore Langueo and The Dream of the Rood, were perhaps his last works. He is considered Northern Irelandís most distinguished native composer.