2005 Regionals: North of England - Preview: First Section

21-Feb-2005

11 bands line up to do battle on John Ireland's Comedy – but it won’t be a laughing matter for those trying to win a trip to Harrogate and a place in the Finals.


Date: Saturday 26th February
Adjudicator: Geoffrey Whitham
Test Piece: Comedy Overture – John Ireland
Commences: 12.00
Draw: 10.45


David HirstEasington Colliery
Conductor:
David Hirst

Last Year: 4th

Last Nine Years:
2004: 4th (D. Hirst)
2003: 8th (D. Dye)
2002: 6th (D. Dye)
2001: 9th (D. Dye)
2000: 7th (D. Dye)
1999: 7th Championship (rel)
1998: 8th Championship
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

David Hirst returns for a second year with Easington and will be looking to improve on the result of a 12 month ago when they finished just outside the prizes. They were a little disappointing at Bultins, but now that the early season cobwebs have been blown away they will be fancying their chances here.  


Tony SwainsonEllington Colliery
Conductor:
T. Swainson

Last Year: Winners Second Section (prom)

Last Nine Years:
2002: Winners Second Section (prom) (D. Wright)
2003: 3rd in Third Section (prom) (D. Wright)
2002: 2nd (D. Wright)
2001: 5th (D. Wright)
2000: 6th (J. Higginson)
1999: N/K
1998: 7th
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

The winners of the Second Section take a bow here this under the direction of the experienced Tony Swainson, after four very successful appearances under David Wright.  This should give them an added boost of confidence , although judging by their recent form here you sense they may be looking for a third quality result and another trip to Harrogate. 


graeme tindallFelling
Conductor:
G. Tindall

Last Year: 2nd Second Section (prom)

Last Nine Years:
2004: 2nd Second Section (prom) (G. Tindall)
2003: 4th (S. Malcolm)
2002: 6th (N. Davies)
2001: 8th (B. Broadbent)
2000: Winners 3rd Section (prom) (B. Broadbent)
1999: N/K
1998: 8th (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Another band making a step up a division this year, Felling came runners up in the Second Section 12 months ago and went on to come 8th at the National Finals. A band with an ever improving record of results here over the past few years, so what odds on another trip to Harrogate then?


Michael FowlesGateshead Brass
Conductor:
M. Fowles

Last Year: DNC

Last NineYears:
2004: DNC
2003: 8th (J. Roberts)
2002: Winners 1st Section (R. Morton)
2001: 6th (rel) (G. O'Connor)
2000: 10th (R. Curran)
1999: 8th
1998: 4th
1997: N/K
1996: 3rd

A return to the fray for Gateshead who according to our records didn't compete here last year. They return this time though under the baton of Michael Fowles, fresh from his latest Norwegian trip and he will surely get them in shape for the challenges of Comedy ahead. Ones to wait and see on. 


Gregg's Bakery
Conductor:
TBA

Last Year: 3rd

Last Nine Years:
2004: 3rd (T. Swainson)
2003: 10th in Championship Section (rel) (D. Marshall)
2002: 7th (G. Cutt)
2001: 7th (N/K)
2000: 8th (D. Marshall)
1999: Winners 1st Section (prom)
1998: 2nd 2nd Section (prom)
1997: 2nd 2nd Section
1996: N/K

After a decent run out in the Championship Section, Gregg's returned to the First Section last year and showed that they were very strong contenders, just missing out on a trip to Harrogate. That should have given them the confidence to do even better here this time around, and if they click then they should feature highly.


Houghton Brass
Conductor:
T. Gibson

Last Year: 3rd Second Section (prom)

Last Nine Years:
2004: 3rd Second Section (prom) (T. Gibson)
2003: 2nd (T. Gibson)
2002: Winners 3rd Section (prom) (T. Gibson)
2001: 4th 3rd Section (T. Gibson)
2000: 5th 3rd Section (T. Gibson)
1999: N/K
1998: 10th (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

A band certainly moving in the right direction it seems and after a spell in the Third Section, Tony Gibson has put together a strong and solid band who have moved steadily up the sections since 2001. Last year they came 3rd in the Second Section and got themselves promoted and they will be looking to continue that upward rise here this year for certain. 


Kirbymoorside
Conductor:
J. Woodward

Last Year: Winners

Last Nine Years:
2004: Winners (J. Woodward)
2003: 6th (J. Woodward)
2002: 8th (J. Woodward)
2001: 5th (J. Woodward)
2000: 5th (J. Woodward)
1999: 3rd
1998: DNC
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Last years winners return once more to see if they can retain their title and book themselves in a B/B for Harrogate. John Woodward and his band have been one of the most consistent performers at this level over the years here, and this year should see them up around the prizes once more. Last year they went on to come 10th at Harrogate, so can they start the ball rolling once more? 


Tim OldroydLangbaurgh Brass
Conductor:
T. Oldroyd

Last Year: 7th

Last NineYears:
2004: 7th (T. Oldroyd)
2003: Winners of Second Section (prom) (T. Oldroyd)
2002: Winners of Second Section (T. Oldroyd)
2001: 2nd 3rd Section (prom) (T. Oldroyd)
2000: 3rd 3rd Section (T. Oldroyd)
1999: Winners 3rd Section
1998: 9th 3rd Section
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Tim Oldroyd continues to do some excellent work with Langbaurgh and last year they put in a very solid show to come 7th and set their foundations down in this section for the years to come. This time though you feel that they will be looking a bit higher up the prize list and a possible trip to Harrogate may well be on the cards. 


RMT Silksworth
Conductor:
tbc

Last Year: 5th

Last Nine Years:
2004: 5th (G. Catherall)
2003: 7th (B. Morton)
2002: 5th 2nd Section (prom) (B. Morton)
2001: 3rd 2nd Section (B. Morton)
2000: 3rd 2nd Section (C. Hardy)
1999: N/K
1998: N/K
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

The band formerly known as Pride Valley will take to the stage this year under their new name and with high hopes of continuing their rise up the prize list of recent times and gain a qualification place at least. If they can just up the form as they have done on their last two outings here they should do well indeed. 


Raymond TennantWestoe (STHCT)
Conductor:
R. Tennant

Last Year: DNC

Last Nine Years:
2004: DNC
2003: 5th in First Section (prom) (J. Smith)
2002: 3rd
2001: Winners 2nd Section (prom)
2000: 2nd 2nd Section
1999: 3rd 3rd Section (prom)
1998: Winners 4th Section
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Westoe South Tyneside Health Care Trust, to give the band its full name make a return this year after not competing at the contest 12 months ago.  This time they have opted for the experienced Raymond Tennant to lead them here and that should prove to be a wise choice. If things are all fixed and they are in good ‘health' then they should have enough about them to feature. 


York Railway Institute
Conductor:
D. Warley

Last Year: 6th

Last Nine Years:
2004: 6th (D. Warley)
2003: 6th in Second Section (prom) (D. Warley)
2002: 3rd (D. Warley)
2001: 2nd (D. Warley)
2000: 9th (D. Beal)
1999: DNC
1998: 9th 1st Section (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: 4th 1st Section

The band from the lovely city of York (the home of the National Railway Museum) return this year with high hopes of lifting themselves up the prize list a bit more and possibly make a serious assault on the podium places. Their long term MD has certainly laid some solid foundations, so can they just steam through to Harrogate? 


Past Qualifiers:

2004: Kirbymoorside, Barrow Shipyard
2003: BHK (UK) Ltd Horden, Barrow Shipyard
2002: Gateshead Brass, Harrogate
2001: Harrogate, Broughton's Brass
2000: Cottingham, Boldon
1999: Gregg's Bakery, Rowntree
1998: Cottingham, Boldon Colliery
1997: Skipton, Vickers Barrow
1996: East Yorkshire Brass, Skipton
1995: EYMS, Boldon Colliery

North of England Bands at the Finals:

2004: 10th, 12th
2003: 1st, 6th
2002: 8th, 18th
2001: 15th, 16th
2000: 12th, 17th
1999: 7th, 16th
1998: 7th, 15th

4BR Prediction:

This should make for a very interesting contest on the Saturday, with a challenging test piece, some pretty good bands and a man in the box who will certainly know this piece inside out. Who will tickle the great Geoffrey Whitham's fancy then?

Looking at the line up, a few names do stick out, with Kirbymoorside looking to make it a double here and the likes of Gregg's, Houghton, Langbaurgh, Westoe and Gateshead all hoping to book places on the Harrogate trip.

For us though, we have opted for Gregg's Bakery to do it this year, although we think they will be closely followed by Kirbymoorside once more and the likes of Langbaurgh, RMT Silksworth and Houghton close behind. The top six should be completed by Gateshead with our dark horse being York Railway

1. Gregg's Bakery
2. Kirbymoorside
3. Langbaurgh
4. RMT Silksworth
5. Houghton
6. Gateshead

Dark Horse: York Railway Institute

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Alan DuguidAlan Duguid
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Conductor, Composer, Adjudicator (ABBA)