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2011 Midlands Regional Championship — Postcard from Bedworth

Bedworth has come of age — it's no longer Midland banding's version of the Emirates Stadium.

Civic HallIt’s said that despite its impressive architectural credentials, Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium still lacks a footballing soul.

Soul

What it needs is a history of great memories to permeate deep into the molecules of the glass and concrete stands – a soul that comes with European football nights such as the recent one against Barcelona that saw it come to anthropomorphic life with a beating, pulsating heart.

It had been the same here at Bedworth – although there has been plenty of silverware on display here over the past few years – unlike the Emirates.

Not now though.

Worthy additions

Bedworth’s Civic Centre and Nicholas Chamberlaine Technology College are now worthy additions to the great list of British banding venues.

They have a banding soul thanks to a series of memorable contests – none more so than this weekend.

Fag and cup of tea

The traditionalists may well bemoan the fact that you can no longer have a fag, cup of tea and bacon butty courtesy of the car park trailer in Burton on Trent, but you cannot fault the amenities that are found here.  

Meanwhile, the players appreciate the fact that they now have contest venues they can bring their family to without the risk of an E-coli infection.

Good acoustic

Conductors tell us the acoustic in both main halls is pretty good and the audience enjoy the fact that they can sit in comfort to listen to the bands perform, without the contest having to be stopped due to the sounds of a Scottish bagpiper at a civil wedding ceremony next door (as was the case at Burton a few years back).   

This year the Championship Section was a bit of an unexpected treat, the Second Section a delight, the Third and Fourth, really enjoyable events.

Only the First Section was a disappointment.

Banding atmosphere

The place may not quite have the intimate atmosphere of St George’s Hall in Bradford, or the stunning murals of the Brangwyn Hall in Swansea, but it now has the type of banding atmosphere that so permeates those venues on Area contest days.

They are now proper band contests.

The organisation here is first class, with Lesley Bentley and her team doing a fine job keeping the two days ticking over, whilst the playing standards were good and it all ended at a pretty respectable time too.

Come of age

The assorted press corps was superbly catered for – something that doesn’t always happen even at the most famous banding venues.

Bedworth has come of age.

All it is missing is that old burger van in the car park.

Chris Thomas



Lewes, Glynde and Beddingham Brass Band - Eastbourne Bandstand - 1812 concert

Wednesday 29 May • Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne BN21 3AD


Black Dyke Band - George Lawton Hall, Mossley

Thursday 30 May • George Lawton Hall, Stamford St, Mossley, Ashton-under-Lyne OL5 0HR


Clifton International Festival of Music - Let Trumpets Sound - Crispian Steele-Perkins

Saturday 1 June • Clifton Cathedral, Clifton Park, Bristol BS8 3BX BS8 3BX


Foden's Band - St Andrews Hall

Sunday 2 June • St Andrews Plain, Norwich, Norfolk NR3 1AU


East Anglian Brass Band Association - Concert by the Fodens Band

Sunday 2 June • St Andrew's Hall. St Andrew's Plain. Norwich NR3 1AU


Bollington Brass Band

May 25 • Bollington Brass Band require a Kit and a tutti cornet player to complete our line up. We will be playing at the 2nd section National Finals this September before promotion to the North West 1st section..


Dobcross Silver Band

May 25 • Dobcross Silver Band are looking for a B FLAT BASS player for Whit Friday.. Come and join a Saddleworth band, playing the Saddleworth circuit, including our very own Dobcross contest.. . A great chance to come and enjoy an unforgettable experience!


Stannington Brass Band

May 25 • A rare opportunity has arisen to join one of Sheffield's leading bands with a vacancy for an EEb TUBA PLAYER to complete our bass section. We have a good band room atmosphere and a calendar of interesting concerts and contests.


Craig Roberts

BA (Hons), MA
Conductor / Adjudicator