2007 North West Regional Championship - Third Section

28-Feb-2007

What a record to uphold here. Whoever gets through here could well be one of the favourites come Harrogate itself, but they first have to overcome the tricky hurdle that is set by Darrol Barry’s test piece.


Sunday 11th March
Pavilion Theatre
Adjudicator: Ian Brownbill
Test Piece: Prelude & Jubilate - Darrol Barry
Draw: 9.00am & 11.15am
Commences: 10.00am


bmpBMP Europe Ltd. Goodshaw
Conductor:
Dave Ashworth

Last 11 Years:
2006: 9th (D. Ashworth)
2005: 7th (D. Ashworth)
2004: 16th (D. Ashworth)
2003: 11th in Second Section (rel) (C. Duxbury)
2002: 11th in Second Section (A. Widdop)
2001: 14th in Second Section (A. Widdop)
2000: 8th in Second Section (R. Curran)
1999: 9th in Second Section
1998: 8th in Second Section
1997: DNC
1996: 11th in Second Section

Dave Ashworth leads his band once more to the contest and he'll be hoping that they can up their game somewhat after coming 9th both here and at Pontins last year.  They didn't compete at Brass at the Guild in February after coming 10th at Butlins, but they know can do better and will be aiming for a top six finish at least. 


City of ChesterCity of Chester
Conductor:
P. Mottershead

Last 11 Years:
2006: 6th (P. Mottershead)
2005: 12th (P. Mottershead)
2004: 8th (D. Mitchell)
2003: 18th (D. Mitchell)
2002: 11th (D. Mitchell)
2001: 7th in Fourth Section (prom) (D. Mitchell)
2000: 15th in Fourth Section (D. Mitchell)
1999: 4th in Fourth Section
1998: 13th (rel)
1997: 14th
1996: 16th

City of Chester are certainly one of the busiest bands we come across at 4BR, and that genuine enthusiasm and work ethic may well stand them in good stead come the weekend. They didn't have the greatest of results here in 2005 but made a real encouraging leap up the prize table last year to come in the top six for the first time since gaining promotion in 2002.    


Dobcross Youth 2003
Conductor:
Ted Griffiths

Last 11 Years:
2006: 5th in Fourth Section  (T. Griffiths) (prom)
2005: 6th (T. Griffiths)
2004: 6th (T. Griffiths)
2003: DNC
2002: DNC
2001: DNC
2000: DNC
1999: DNC

The Ted Griffiths success story with Dobcross Youth just keeps rolling and rolling along. It's an amazing story as this talented bunch of youngsters keep performing to levels that belies their young ace.  Last year they didn't really play as well as they would have hoped for here and came 5th in the Fourth Section, but that was enough to gain them promotion, and a year's more experience will surely have done them no harm at all. 


Douglas Town
Conductor:
Gordon Higginbottom

Last 11 Years:
2006:11th (G. Higginbottom)
2005: 10th (G. Higginbottom)
2004: 7th in Fourth Section (G. Higginbottom) (prom)
2003: 9th (G. Higginbottom)
2002: 2nd (G. Higginbottom)
2001: 15th (G. Higginbottom)
2000: 11th (K. Mitchell)
1999: 5th
1998: 13th
1997: 11th

The great Gordon Higginbottom once more brings his band over the Irish Sea to enjoy the delights of Blackpool. They've found it tough going though in the past year or so, here finishing 10th in 2005 and 11th last year, so they'll be looking for a morale boosting performance to save off any threat of dropping into the Fourth Section. 


EagleyEagley
Conductor:
G Westwood

Last 11 Years:
2006: 10th Second Section (D. Thornton) (rel)
2005: 11th (S. White)
2004: 6th (S. Rodgers)
2003: = 8th (C. Andrews)
2002: 7th (N. Sheppard)
2001: 9th in First Section (rel) (C. Roberts)
2000: 8th in First Section (C. Roberts)
1999: 4th (prom)
1998: 5th
1997: 5th
1996: 3rd in Third Section (prom)

Not even the talents of Black Dyke's star euphonium player David Thiornton could help Eagley avoid relegation last year after they came 10th in the Second Section here so it's a return to the third tier of North West regional banding for the first time since 1996. Perhaps that signals the starting point for another revival. 


EcclestonEccleston Brass
Conductor:
Ian Bateson

Last 11 Years:
2006: 8th (I. Bateson)
2005: 3rd (I. Bateson)
2004: 7th (I. Bateson)
2003: 16th (B. Harper)
2002: 12th (B. Harper)
2001: 6th (B. Harper)
2000: 15th (G. Smith)
1999: 14th
1998: 8th
1997: 8th
1996: 8th

Ian Bateson continues to do some fine work with Eccleston. 8th last year must have been a disappointment to them after finishing third the year previously. They did end 2006 in good heart taking the Pontins crown in fine fashion at Prestatyn and 2007 has started off well too with 4th place at Brass at the Guild. A band ready to make a move for a qualification place at least? 


FlixtonFlixton
Conductor:
Kevin Gibbs

Last 11 Years:
2006: 2nd (K. Gibbs)
2005: 15th (K. Gibbs)
2004: 9th in Second Section (P. Lockett) (rel)
2003: 10th (E. Campbell)
2002: DNC
2001: DNC
2000: 6th in First Section (rel) (C. Tenfijord)
1999: 9th in First Section
1998: 2nd (prom)
1997: 4th
1996: 9th in First Section (rel)

Second last year, Flixton return looking to book a return trip to Harrogate where they were unlucky not to become National Champions last September.  A fine band who even when they don't peak at top form still find themselves in the mix. They came 5th at Butlins in January against some excellent company and if they can repeat that form as well as having just a touch more luck from the men in the box they should well feature once more.  


Friezland
Conductor:
L. Tingay

Last 11 Years:
2006: 13th (L. Clough)
2005: 16th (L. Clough)
2004: 4th in Fourth Section (L. Clough) (prom)
2003: = 4th (L. Clough)
2002: 5th (L. Clough)
2001: 9th (L. Clough)
2000: 17th (L. Clough)
1999: 2nd
1998: 12th
1997: 17th
1996: 10th

The Saddleworth based outfit have had a tough time at the areas in the past year or two finishing 16th in 2005 and 13th last year, but after so mnay years in the bottom section that has still been a pretty good effort from all concerned. Lana Tingay continues to work her socks off and although they may need a real push up the prize table to fend off any relegation threats they may well do just that and more. 


hawkHawk Green (Marple)
Conductor:
P. Pavey

Last 11 Years:
2006: 11th in Second Section (rel) (P.Pavey)
2005: 10th (P. Pavey)
2004: 11th (J. Richardson)
2003: 13th in First Section (rel) (J. Richardson)
2002: 10th (J. Richardson)
2001: 3rd in Second Section (prom) (D. Ashworth)
2000: 3rd in Second Section (B. Harper)
1999: 11th in First Section (rel)
1998: 6th in Second Section (prom)
1997: 6th in Second Section
1996: 3rd in Second Section

Hawk Green will be looking to bounce right back after coming down from the second section last year.  The band has been battling it out as high as the First Section in recent years, so they will be keen to stop any potential rot setting in here. There needs to be a starting point for any new revival and this could just be it.  


Hazel Grove
Conductor:
Neil Bowden

Last 11 Years:
2006: 14th (N. Bowden)
2005: 11th (N. Bowden)
2004: 12th (T. Emery)
2003: 10th (A. Hirst)
2002: 16th (A. Hirst)
2001: 12th (L. Hall)
2000: 13th (L. Hall)
1999: 10th
1998: Winners of Fourth Section (prom)
1997: 10th in Fourth Section
1996: 4th in Fourth Section

Neil Boweden's Stockport-based band have been floating around the middle of this section in recent years but 14th last year was their lowest placing since 2002 and they will need a decent result this weekend if they are to fend of any relegation fears.     


Middleton
Conductor:
C. Whiteoak

Last 11 Years:
2006: 5th (C. Whiteoak)
2005: 4th (C. Whiteoak)
2004: 10th (B. Warrington)
2003: 12th (G. Smith)
2002: 3rd (S. Foster)
2001: 8th in Fourth Section (prom) (B. Warrington)
2000: 4th in Fourth Section (B. Warrington)
1999: DNC
1998: DNC
1997: DNC
1996: DNC

Middleton continue to push themselves up the results table and show themselves to be strong contenders here.  5th place last year maintained the good form of late on this stage and  6th place recently at Preston in the Second Section and a decent 13th place at Pontins late last year against some good bands should encourage them.    


Morecambe
Conductor:
C. Larder
 
Last 11 Years:
2006: 10th (M. Vause)
2005: DNC (rel)
2004: DNC
2003: 4th
2002: 2nd
2001: 2nd in Third Section (prom)
2000: 11th (rel)
1999: 12th
1998: 12th
1997: 8th
1996: 10th in First Section (prom)

A return to the contesting arena for Morecambe after two years away last year saw them finish in an encouraging 10th place.  They're still a bit of an unknown quantity to us at 4BR though so all we can do is wish them well and hope they enjoy their trip down the Lancashire Coast.  


Oldham LeesOldham (Lees)
Conductor:
John Collins

Last 11 Years:
2006: Winners of Fourth Section (J. Collins) (prom)
2005: Winners of Fourth Section (J. Collins)
2004: DNC
2003: DNC
2002: DNC
2001: 7th in First Section (rel) (A. White)
2000: Winners of Second Section (prom) (A. White)
1999: 2nd in Second Section
1998: 2nd in Third Section (prom)
1997: DNC
1996: DNC

Is Oldham going to be the band to beat? You wouldn't bet against it even though they've come up a section.  They took the Fourth Section last year by storm, finished up as runners-up behind Dodworth at Harrogate but got revenge a few weeks later finishing ahead of the Yorkshire band at Pontins.  They took the spoils at Preston in February in the Third Section so they'll be up for this, make no mistake.  


PembertonPemberton Old Wigan JJB B
Conductor:
Peter Ashley

Last 11 Years:
2006: 7th (P. Ashley)
2005: 5th in Fourth Section (prom) (P. Ashley)
2004: Winners of Fourth Section (P. Ashley)
2003: 14th (P. Ashley)
2002: 6th (P. Ashley)
2001: Winners of Fourth Section (P. Ashley)
2000: 20th (P. Ashley)
1999: 13th

Pemberton Old continue to make an impression and move in the right direction under Peter Ashley.  They came 7th last year and rounded 2006 with 6th place at Pontins, whilst 2007 has begun with a highly encouraging 3rd place at Preston.  They've certainly got plenty about them and they'll be fancying their chances this weekend for sure. 


Pilling Jubilee Silver
Conductor:
Billy Porter

Last 11 Years:
2006: DNC
2005: 9th (B. Harper)
2004: 11th (B. Harper)
2003: 8th (S. Foster)
2002: 10th (S. Simpson)
2001: 10th (S. Simpson)
2000: 14th (S. Simpson)
1999: 8th
1998: 3rd in Fourth Section (prom)
1997: 3rd in Fourth Section
1996: DNC

Pilling return this year after a year's absence, but they're a touch of the unknown quantity in terms of form to us after being regular attendees here over the years. They were due to feature at Preston but withdrew, so we hope all is well within the camp and they have concentrated all their efforts on making a impression here.


rivRivington & Adlington
Conductor:
D. Mort

Last 11 Years:
2006: DNC
2005: 4th in Fourth Section (H. Bentham) (prom)
2004: 10th (H. Bentham)
2003: 6th (H. Bentham)
2002: 9th (J. Bateson)
2001: 10th (A. Marsh)
2000: 21st (A. Marsh)
1999: 11th
1998: 15th in Third Section (rel)
1997: DNC
1996: 15th in Third Section

Rivington & Adlington return to the contest stage here in Blackpool after being away absent last year. With a new MD at the helm they showed some form at Preston earlier in the season when they came 10th against a strong field of competitors and they also came 12th at Pontins to close off last season. That may give some indication of how they may do here, although we are sure they will be aiming higher.


Skelmersdale Prize
Conductor:
A. Booth

Last 11 Years:
2006: DNC
2005: DNC
2004: DNC
2003: DNC
2002: DNC
2001: DNC
2000: 7th (C.Dickinson)

We've had to go back through the record books but it looks like Skelmersdale are making their first appearance here since 2000. Great to see them return and they did show form at Pontins late last year when they came in 8th against a strong field of challengers. 


Valley BrassValley Brass (Haydock)
Conductor:
Dave Chadwick

Last 11 Years:
2006: 15th in Third Section (D. Chadwick)
2005: 2nd in Fourth Section (prom) (R. Wyatt)
2004: 8th (D. Chadwick)
2003: DNC
2002: DNC
2001: 8th
2000: 14th
1999: 9th
1998: DNC
1997: DNC
1996: DNC

Dave Chadwick continues to do an amazing job with Valley Brass.  It's not that long ago they took the Fourth Section National title, but they found SectionThree a real baptism of fire last year.  The band took the Pontins Youth B Section title last September and came 7th at the Pontins finals in November so it looks like they could be in line to make a much better mark this time around.  


whitworthWhitworth Vale and Healey
Conductor:
John Binns

Last 11 Years:
2006: 3rd (J. Binns)
2005: 6th (J. Binns)
2004: 13th (J. Binns)
2003: 9th (R. Milton)
2002: DNC
2001: 11th in Second Section (rel) (C. Myers)
2000: 13th in Second Section (R. Milton)
1999: 7th (prom)
1998: 3rd
1997: 9th
1996: 13th

The Lancastrians return to Blackpool looking to maintain their recent good form that's seen runners up places at Pontins and last months Brass at the Guild.  The talented John Binns leads them once more and they'll be looking to improve on last year's 3rd place for sure and book himself and his band into B&B at Harrogate later this year. That said, a hat trick of seconds would go down well too. 


Past Qualifiers:
2006: Rainford, Flixton
2005: Trinity Girls, United Norwest 2000 Brass, Eccleston Brass
2004: Hoover Bolton, United Norwest 2000, Boarshurst Silver
2003: Diggle, Boarshurst, Hoover (Bolton)
2002: Wire Brass, Silk Brass, Middleton
2001: Manx Concert Brass, British Energy Morecambe
2000: Old Hall Brass, Skelmersdale
1999: Manx Concert Brass, Dobcross Youth
1998: United Norwest Co-op Normid 2000, Oldham Brass ‘97
1997: Ashton Under Lyne, Milnrow, Manx Concert Brass
1996: Hollingworth, Pemberton Old
1995: Goodshaw, Hollingworth 


North West bands at the Finals:
2006: 2nd, 5th
2005: 6th, 7th, 9th
2004: 1st, 4th, 6th
2003: 1st, 2nd, 8th
2002: 1st, 2nd, 3rd
2001: 1st, 10th
2000: 4th, 7th
1999: 2nd, 11th
1998: 1st, 4th, 18th  


4BR Prediction:
Nineteen bands for Ian Brownbill to get to grips with here but out of a large field, we'd expect a few bands to fancy their chances of featuring on the day.

Oldham Band (Lees) come in excellent form having taken the honours at Preston last month. They made a huge impact on the Fourth Section but can they do it at  a higher level?  Perennial favourites to feature have been Flixton and they'll fancy their chances of doing well too and we have similar thoughts that the likes of  Whitworth Vale and Healey, Wardle, Middleton and Pemberton Old JJB could well feature highly.   
 
1. Oldham Band (Lees)
2. Flixton
3. Pemberton Old JJB
4. Whitworth Vale and Healey
5. Eccleston
6. Middleton

Dark Horses: Wardle & District Anderson

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