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2013: August

Our views on standing up and being counted, support not control and in praise of a sense of adventure.

Stand up and be counted  

With the anticipated last rites soon to be performed on the British Brass Band Registry, the time has come to finally resolve the question of why the banding movement in the UK needs a registry of players.

Having a Brass Band Players Registry is one thing: Having one that has no function other than being a list of names is quite another.

It is the one asset the banding movement has to democratically underpin its financial future – from the National Finals to a local association solo & duet contests, yet distrust and petty jealousies have blinded us to the simple fact for far too long.

Hopefully, no longer.

Kapitol Promotions has announced (Dec 2012) that it will set up of a Brass Band Players Registry Advisory Body that incorporates elected representatives from the six English regions plus representatives of the major brass band competitions.

It will have a remit decided by the organisation itself, as will the agenda, for the development of English brass band registration and the modernisation of its purpose and function through liaison with its Welsh and Scottish counterparts.

With far too many brass band contests surviving on a life support mechanism that sucks money directly from competing bands, whilst at the same time turning a blind eye to the damage caused by allowing borrowed players to undermine competitive integrity, the need to formulate a blueprint for future functional as well as financial stability had become the most urgent imperative.

The responsibility to decide how it is done has been promised to those democratically elected. 

As soon as the last rites are administered, the time will have come for those wishing to seek that responsibility to stand up and be counted.

What do you think?
Send an email to: comments@4barsrest.com 


Support not control

It’s not often an incoming chairman of any brass band organisation makes such a positive impression as that of Mike Kilroy at the recent AGM of Brass Bands England.

His single statement of intent: “I see Brass Bands England as being a supportive not controlling interest”, may well have far reaching consequences for the organisation – and all perhaps for the good.

A new sense of realism has dawned on BBE, which may well see the timely culling of a few sacred controlling cows, to be replaced by a proactive support network aimed at providing long term benefits for bands great and small throughout England.

Already, things are being done and problems addressed with positive messages being heard from bands and organisations that have been given support by BBE and its Liaison and Development Officers.

The new ethos – perfectly summed up by BBE’s new Chairman in his opening remarks is already being felt.

Long may it continue.

What do you think?
Send an email to: comments@4barsrest.com 


In praise of a spirit of adventure

Cory’s forthcoming tour to Australia is one heck of a commitment, yet it is just the latest in a historic line of ambitious musical undertakings that have long been part of our brass banding culture.

It may not quite have the truly epic sense of adventure as was the case with the pioneering trips of Besses o’th’ Barn and Black Dyke well over a century ago (as well as the reciprocal trips from the likes of the Australian Newcastle Steel Works band in the 1920s), but in many ways it is just as risky. 

It has taken a tremendous amount of organising with no absolute guarantee of success, although with 11 concerts in just 12 days, the Cory players (and a few guests) will certainly be working their socks off to ensure the Australian public gets full value for its concert going dollar.

Let’s hope that in return the Australian banding public appreciates their spirit of adventure and supports them fully too.

What do you think?
Send an email to: comments@4barsrest.com 



Walsall Brass Band - Willenhall Singers

Saturday 18 November • Sneyd Communnity Centre, Vernon Way, Bloxwich, Walsall. WS3 2PA


Rushden Town Band -

Saturday 18 November • Park Rd Baptist Church, Rushden, Northamptonshire NN10 0RW


Contest: Brass in Concert

Saturday 18 November • Sage Gateshead, St Mary's Square, Gateshead NE28 2JR


Foden's Band - Morley Town Hall

Saturday 18 November • Queen Street, Morley LS27 9DY


Black Dyke Band - Waterford, Ireland

Saturday 18 November • Carriganore Arena, Waterford Institute of Technology Sports Campus tbc


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


Craig Roberts

BA (Hons), MA
Conductor / Adjudicator