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Grimethorpe gain new sponsorship deal

Three fantastic pieces of news for the National Champions as they gain a new sponsorship deal, solo horn and pick up the 4BR Band of the Year title too.



4BR has confirmed that Grimethorpe Colliery (UK Coal) Band, the current National Champion Band of Great Britain has secured a 3-year sponsorship deal with Powerfuel PLC.

The sponsorship will start from 1st January 2007 and will mean that the band will revert back to its most famous name of Grimethorpe Colliery Band.

Wonderful news

The package enables the Band to continue its association with the Mining industry and also keeps alive a part of Britain's musical heritage under the famous Grimethorpe Colliery Band nameTerry Webster, Band Manager

Band Manager Terry Webster told 4BR that it was wonderful news for the band. “The management of the Grimethorpe Colliery band is pleased to announce that the new main sponsor for the Band from the 1st of January 2007 is Powerfuel PLC. The Chief Executive Officer Richard Budge has once again come to the help of the Band. Previously Mr. Budge initiated sponsorship with Grimethorpe under the former RJB Mining on the privatisation of the Coal Industry and Mr.Budge and Powerfuel have now secured the immediate future of the current National Champions once again.”.

Ironic twist

The announcement has a rather ironic twist to it as well as 2006 was the tenth anniversary of the release of the movie "Brassed Off" without Richard Budge's assistance and intervention then, the bands future would have been under threat. History it seems is repeating itself.

Initial 3 year package

Terry Webster also confirmed to 4BR that the sponsorship package by Powerfuel is for an initial three years and can be extended by agreement by both parties. Terry added: “The package enables the Band to continue its association with the Mining industry and also keeps alive a part of Britain's musical heritage under the famous Grimethorpe Colliery Band name.”

Solo horn

Meanwhile Grimethorpe also welcome Martin Armstrong, the former principal horn player with both the Fodens and Black Dyke Bands to their ranks as their new solo horn player. Terry Webster took the opportunity to welcome Martin to the band. “We have been looking for a permanent top class player to fill the solo horn position with the band for some time and we believe we have achieved that with the signing of Martin. He is a superb player who will enhance band. It is a great signing for us.”

4BR Band of the Year

The third piece of good news for the band came on Christmas Day when they found out that the band had been voted 4BR Band of the Year and that their Musical Director Allan Withington had won the 4BR Conductor of the Year title.

”We are also delighted with the two awards,” Terry commented. “To be voted Band of the Year by the readers of 4BR means a great deal and shows that our efforts on both the contest and concert stage are appreciated. I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who voted for us.” Terry also believed that conductor Allan Withington would also be delighted by his award. “I’m sure Allan appreciates his award too. We have developed an excellent relationship with Allan that we believe has greatly enhanced the band in the past year. This is a great recognition for his efforts too.”

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Duncan A. Beckley

Conductor, adjudicator, band trainer and teacher