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2011 Midlands Regional Championship — Bedworth preview

The new Bedworth experience is producing solid results but perhaps the bands here need something of the old Burton on Trent to get them really 'going'?

Civic HallNothing spectacular – just good solid non-nonsense banding: That’s the recipe at the Midlands of late.  

Spark into life

The Area contest at Bedworth has yet to memorably catch fire –although there are signs that things may be about to spark into life after the smouldering form of late of bands here in all five sections.

There is undoubtedly passion and emotion running through the veins, but it only occasionally provides the fuel for a flashpoint of startling contesting brilliance. 

Plenty of talking points over results, but not many over a performance that singed an indelible stamp of permanency in the memory banks.

Missing the grime and germs

Perhaps the players are missing the grime and germs of the old Burton on Trent experience – the old burger van certainly used to get those with pre contest nervous dispositions ‘going’…  

2010 was a case in point – solid qualifiers produced decent returns at both London and Harrogate, but no winner and no podium finishers.

Three top six finishes and two other bands in the top 10.  OK – nothing more, nothing less. 

A bit more squeaky bum, edge of the seat stuff may do the Midlanders some good in preparation for the finals.

Talent

The talent is there – as seen by a host of strong performances at Butlins, but it’s a frustration that an area that boasts 76 bands making it to the starting blocks (down 4 this year) has only three National champions to boast about in the past five years – and only one since 2008.

Could that change this year we wonder?

Well run

Bedworth is a very well run event  - with two cracking venues providing excellent facilities for the bands. The organisation is slick and professional and there is always a warm welcome to be enjoyed.

It is a pity that numbers are slightly down this year, with no Thoresby Colliery Youth, Chapel-en-le-Frith, Coleshill, Audley, Syston or Burbage Silver (and with Dronfield opting for Yorkshire), but there is good news in the return of Ifton and Skegness.

There is also the big field of contenders in the Fourth Section as always – a sure sign that the grass roots banding in the area is still in a pretty healthy state.

Interesting choices

Meanwhile, there are also some interesting choices in the box too (a feature of this contest in recent years) with Philip Harper joined by Peter Bassano in the top section and Paul Norley, David Horsfield, Alan Hope and Steve Pritchard Jones making up an eclectic mix to decide the Cheltenham places.  

Let’s hope there is something spectacular to get them all going then…

Iwan Fox



Gloucestershire Brass Band Association - Own Choice March & Test Piece Contest

Sunday 19 November • All Saints’ Academy. Blaisdon Way. Cheltenham GL51 0WH


Rotherham Schools' Youth Brass Band - Fountain City Brass Band

Monday 20 November • Rotherham Minster - Rotherham s60 1pd


Foden's Band - Matt Ford - Lichfield Cathedral

Friday 24 November • 19A The Close, Lichfield WS13 7LD


Lofthouse Brass Band - Pudsey Churches Together Christmas Concert

Saturday 25 November • Pudsey Parish Church, Church Lane, Pudsey, LS28 7BD LS28 7BD


Lofthouse Brass Band - Lofthouse Christmas Fair

Saturday 25 November • Lofthouse Methodist Church, Leeds Road, Lofthouse, Wakefield WF3 3NE


Newstead Brass

November 18 • Bb Cornet (position negotiable). . Newstead Brass, established Midlands Championship section, have opportunity for an additional cornet player. Suitable for experienced player or someone looking to take the next step in their development.


Wakefield Metropolitan Brass Band

November 17 • FRONT ROW CORNET. SOLO TROMBONE. . The band have an exciting concert/contest/marching schedule ahead. We are looking for a committed front row cornet and solo trombone player to come and join us in the Yorkshire 1st Section! MD: Richard Larder.


Glossop Old Band

November 17 • SOLO TROMBONE. The Glossop Old Band Welcomes applications for the Solo Trombone Chair. The Band will be competing in the First Section as of 2018 and are looking to continue its progression back to the top levels of performance


Alan Widdop


Conductor, Brass teacher, Adjudicator (ABBA)