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OBE for Keith Griffin

The man who formed the National Youth Brass Band of Wales receives OBE in the New Year's Honours List.



Keith Griffin, founder of the National Youth Brass Band of Wales and the Welsh Amateur Music Federation has been awarded the OBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List, published today.

Leading administrators

One of the leading musical administrators in the UK, he spent a 40 year career providing invaluable support, advice, practical help and planning to a host of musical organisations — from community brass bands to the visit of Pope John Paul II to Wales in 1982.

The award is made in recognition of his services to music in Wales.

A gifted musician in his own right, he conducted the Cardiff County Youth Band for over 20 years and composed numerous works for the Salvation Army.

Drive and commitment

His life long drive and commitment to music making saw him found the Welsh Amateur Music Federation, later to become Ty Cerdd, as well as the nation’s National Youth Brass Band in 1982, followed soon after by the National Choir, National Jazz and National Youth Wind Band organisations.

His son Tom told 4BR: "The family is of course very proud of his achievements, and delighted that his work and commitment to music making in Wales has been recognised in this way. He is really overwhelmed by the messages of congratulations that have been pouring in from all over the world."

Passionate advocate

He added: "My father continues to be a passionate advocate for music making and all the good that it brings to people—especially youngsters."

Countless thousands of young musicians have benefited directly from Keith’s passionate, inspired involvement in the arts in Wales—with brass banding at the forefrontIestyn Davies


Brass Band Forum Wales Chairman Iestyn Davies told 4BR: "The award is wonderful recognition for a truly outstanding career. Countless thousands of young musicians have benefited directly from Keith’s passionate, inspired involvement in the arts in Wales—with brass banding at the forefront.

He has been a real champion for the banding movement as shown by his decision to form the National Youth Brass Band in 1982."


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James Chamberlain

BMus (Hons) PGCE
Conductor, Teacher