2012 National Championships of Great Britain — Second Section Runners & Riders

List of the competing bands in the Second Section at Cheltenham

The Centaur, Cheltenham
22-23 September

band logoChalgrove

Conductor: Terry Brotherhood

Chalgrove Band was initially formed in late 1800s as a Temperence Band, although band practices were held at the local Red Lion pub.

The band was reformed in 1972 by three local enthusiasts in the Fourth Section, but over the years has gained promotion to the Second Section.

In 2007 they won the London & Southern Counties 4th Section Championship conducted by Michael Pegram, followed by promotion in 2008. Consistent high placing in the Area contests under Terry Brotherhood in the three years up to 2011 meant the band was promoted to the Second Section in 2012.

In their first Area contest in March, the band qualified for the Finals after coming runner-up against a strong field of rivals.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Steve Clapton
Principal Euphonium: Viv Jackon
Soprano: John Noall
Solo Horn: Rob Andrews
Principal Trombone: Pat Aitken
Flugel: Amanda Giles
Baritone: Ali Jamieson
Eb Bass: Chris Wells
Bb Bass: Dave Bate
Principal Percussionist: Dave Hadland

Region: London & Southern Counties
Qualified: 2nd (T. Brotherhood)

After an illustrious career as a player, including principal cornet at Morris Motors Band, Terry Brotherhood's conducting career first took him to City of Oxford and then Kidlington, in turn taking the band to Championship Section status.

Terry joined Stonesfield Silver Band in 1997, and led them from the bottom of the Fourth Section to the upper reaches of the First in under a decade, competing in three National Finals on the way.

He took over the position of MD of Chalgrove in 2009. With Terry leading them to 4th and 3rd places (2010, 2011) at the London Area Third Section, the band was promoted in 2012 and qualified at their first attempt for the Finals at Stevenage.

Test Piece Views:
It is fair to say the band is not too enamoured with Academic Festival Overture.

It’s a lovely orchestral piece but a much different challenge to the original works the band has tackled such as the excellent Cross Patonce.

band logoClifton & Lightcliffe

Conductor: John Clay

The Clifton & Lightcliffe Band was formed in 1838 as the Clifton Silver Prize Band.

The name changed to Clifton & Lightcliffe in 1932 after receiving financial assistance from a local businessman and new headquarters at Bailiff Bridge, Brighouse where the band still rehearses today.

The band has won many prizes in its history including podium places at the Crystal Palace National Finals, whilst under the direction of John Clay they have qualified for the National Finals in 2006, 2007 and 2010.

The band receives no financial support and raises money by performing around 60 concerts each year. They have toured France, Switzerland, Austria and Italy and recently returned from their first trip to the USA, where concerts were performed with the Golden State Brass Band and the Pomona Wind Band.

Members of the band are busy at the present time preparing for a Brassed Off production in Saltaire at the beginning of October, and we have already received an enquiry to do undertake a third appearance in 2011.

As well as the senior band meeting twice a week and also have a B Band with 36 members and a training band of 16 members with ages ranging from 8 years upwards.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Mark Crisp
Principal Euphonium: Graham Cass
Soprano: Sally Cass
Solo Horn: Alex Crisp
Principal Trombone: Michael Rogers
Flugel: Karen Williams
Baritone: Janet Bell
Eb Bass: Graham Horsfield
Bb Bass: Roger Morgan-Williams
Principal Percussion: David Clay

Region: Yorkshire
Qualified: Winners (J. Clay)

John started his career on cornet at the age of 9 with Clifton & Lightcliffe. At the age of 14 he was one of the youngest players to successfully audition for Black Dyke Band, where over the next fifteen years he played all the cornet positions including principal before settling on flugel horn.

After leaving Black Dyke, he returned to Clifton & Lightcliffe where he started a junior band in 1977, which is now the ‘B’ Band, and still conducts them today.

John studied for his BA after being made redundant from the textile industry, and is now a music teacher. He also arranges music for brass band and was appointed Musical Director of the senior band in 2005.

John has had a comprehensive book published on the history of Black Dyke Band, this has been put together from a large collection of historical information and photographs he has collected over many years. He also gives talks to local groups on the history of that famous band.

Test Piece Views:
It’s a good piece not as easy as first sight, lots of hidden detail. The trombones and percussion wish they had more to do but it is one we can use in our concerts.

band logoCoalburn Silver

Conductor: Gareth Bowman

Coalburn Silver Band was formed in 1902 and is the only surviving brass band in the South Lanarkshire area, having its roots in the coal mining industry.

The band has had many successes over the years, including winning the Scottish Challenge Cup in 2006 & 2009.

In 2012 the band was runner-up in the Scottish Championships and winners of the 2nd Section at both the Fife Brass Band Festival and Land O’ Burns contests.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Ali McCorkell
Principal Euphonium: Chris Downing
Soprano: David Black
Solo Horn: Catriona Squires
Principal Trombone: Ronnie Kenmuir
Flugel: Trevor Gray
Baritone: Gordon Millar
Eb Bass: Jim Buchanan
Bb Bass: Alan Court
Principal Percussionist: Jamie Millar

Region: Scotland
Qualified: 2nd (G. Bowman)

Gareth was born in Glasgow. He began playing trombone and piano at Clydebank High School and soon joined Clydebank Burgh Band.

He went on to study music at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music, graduating in 2003 to become a music teacher and in 2006, was appointed Principal Teacher of Music at Greenock Academy.

Gareth has worked with numerous ensembles and choirs and won the NABBC (Scotland) Conducting competition held at the RSAMD in 2009.

He has worked with the Coalburn Silver Band since 2004, and has led the band through one of the most successful periods in their history. Over the last six years, the band has progressed from the Fourth Section to the Second and hopefully beyond.

Test Piece Views:
The band is starting to enjoy the test piece - it poses different challenges as an orchestral transcription. After working on Cross Patonce our percussionists are not quite as busy this time around.

band logoCroy

Conductor: Kenneth Blackwood

Croy Silver Band was formed in 1875 from the families who came to find employment in the local coal mines.

The band’s aim is to promote and encourage the enhancement of brass band playing. As a result the band endeavours to play at as many concerts throughout the year in support of local events and various charities.

Added to these events the band looks to compete at as many contests. During 2011-2012 they gained podium finishes at the three contests entered – including the Borders Entertainment Contest, Fife Brass Band Festival and notably winning the Scottish Championships. This will be the eighth time the band will have represented Scotland at the National Finals.

Throughout the years the band has performed at various notable events. In 1968 they made history by playing at the Scotland versus England football match, and in 1982 and 2011 they performed for Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI respectively.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Jim O’Donnell
Principal Euphonium: Tom Cadberry
Soprano: Iain Archibald
Solo Horn: Elaine Stewart
Principal Trombone: Jennifer Aitken
Flugel: Diane Field
Baritone: Andy McAtee
Eb Bass: Ian Cummings
Bb Bass: Joe Hadnum

Region: Scotland
Qualified: Winners (K. Blackwood)

Ken has been with the band since 2007. He first started playing in early 1970’s with Kirkintilloch Junior Band, later joining the ranks of the Kirkintilloch Senior Band.

He went on to attend the RSAMD playing french horn and was awarded the prestigious horn prize in 1983 and 1984.

After graduating he was appointed Assistant Principal Horn to the Scottish Opera Orchestra by Sir Alex Gibson. Two years later he moved to play Assistant Principal Horn with the RSNO where he stayed for the next seventeen years.

During his spell with the RSNO he performed in concerts with Pavarotti, Yehudi Menuhi, John Lill and many other great soloists. In 2003 he left the RSNO to take up his present position as Senior Teacher in the East Renfrewshire Music Service.

Test Piece Views:
The band has enjoyed rehearsing the test piece and look forward to playing at Cheltenham.

band logoGoodwick Brass

Conductor: Matthew Jenkins

Goodwick Brass was formed in 1911 but later disbanded around 1936.

Fortunately the band was reformed in 1987 by John Evans, and since then has grown from strength to strength.

It now has both an active senior and youth band, which takes its membership from a wide cross section of the community from all over Pembrokeshire.

This last year, six of the band’s youngsters successfully auditioned for the National Youth Brass Band of Wales, and it’s worth noting that no other band in Wales provided as many players to the organisation.

The band is very proud of their achievements and as an established band has competed in both regional and national competitions, with some of their most notable recent successes both at home (once again winning the Welsh Area title) and at major British championship such as Pontins.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Luke Jenkins
Solo Euphonium: Keith Williams
Solo Trombone: Daniel Sajko
Soprano: Ffion Williams
Flugel: Alex Morgan
Horn: Ryan Howells
Baritone: Ben Stacey
Eb Bass: Mike Hughes
Bb Bass: Tony Evans
Percussion: Lawrence Stalbow-Best

Region: Wales
Qualified: Winners (M. Jenkins)

Matthew Jenkins started playing at the age of 8 and took up the euphonium aged 13.

He was taught by Hilary Lewis and John Jones and has recently completed a four year course at the Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff under the tutelage of David Childs.

In 2002, Matthew became a member of the NYBBW and progressed to play solo euphonium with the band.

Matthew represented Wales in the European Youth Brass Band in 2006 where he was selected to play principal euphonium and is a former member of the Cory Band.

In his short time as conductor Matthew has certainly made his mark, leading Goodwick to the Welsh League title and a fine runner up spot at Pontins in 2009.

He also led the band to be placed runner up last year at these finals and win the 2011 Welsh Area title once more.

Test Piece Views:
None given

band logoHaslingden & Helmshore

Conductor: David Holland

The Haslingden & Helmshore Bands have been in existence since approximately 1870. Known as the Haslingden Boro Temperance Band and the Helmshore Public Prize Band, the two bands were rivals for 100 years and 1972 merged to form the current band.

In recent years the bands has achieved considerable success in the contest field, being Manchester District 4th Section Champions in 1996 and 1997, North West Area 4th Section Champion Band for 1997/1998, runners up at the National Final Championship in Harrogate in 1998 and finally achieving promotion to the 3rd Section in the North West Area.

This success has continued in the past couple of seasons culminating in their appearance at the National Finals this year.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Craig McFarland
Euphonium: Andy Tyson
Soprano: Andrea Moss
Solo Horn: Melanie McFarland
Trombone: Paul McGuiness
Flugel: Gwenneth McFarland
Baritone: Gillian Mastyla
Eb Bass: Martin Bradshaw
Bb Bass: Chris Faulkner
Percussion: Andrea Holland

Region: North West
Qualified: 2nd (D. Holland)

David Holland started his playing career with the Tintwistle Band. Aged 16 he joined the Lancashire Constabulary and the Band of the Lancashire Constabulary.

He subsequently left Tintwistle as the Police Band rose through the sections. By now David had moved onto Eb bass and was a member of the eight man Lancashire Constabulary Fanfare Trumpet Team. In 1990 he was appointed MD of Haslingden & Helmshore, then a non-contesting band.

Under David’s direction they have enjoyed many successes, taking them to the National Finals in 1998 where they gained second place in the Fourth Section.

This year has been busy and eventful. Not only has the band won a trophy in each of the five contests that they have competed in, David celebrated his 60th birthday and directed the band in a contest performance for the 50th time!

Test Piece Views:
None given

band logoLittleport Brass

Conductor: Nigel Bramley

Littleport Brass is a village band from Cambridgeshire. Formed by a group of young men in the early 1880s, and known as Littleport Town Band, it fulfilled numerous local engagements.

In 1931 the band disbanded, although a year later the village branch of the British Legion formed a silver band.

Some 80 years later and now known as Littleport Brass, the band is thriving and still entertaining the public, as well as regularly competing on the contest stage.

Under the guidance of MD Nigel Bramley, the band gained promotion to the Second Section in 2009, having won the previous year’s Third Section Areas. The band has built on this success and will start 2013 in the First Section for the first time ever in its history. Additionally, the band won the second Section at the Leicester Autumn contest in 2011.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Ryan Goodall
Principal Euphonium: Sean Broderick
Soprano: Andrew Keen
Solo Horn: Clare Hall
Principal Trombone: Matthew Ralph
Flugel: Eleanor Sharpe
Baritone: Sarah Green
Eb Bass: Howard Peacock
Bb Bass: Steven Garwood
Principal Percussionist: Nathaniel Revell

Region: London & Southern Counties
Qualified: 3rd (N. Bramley)

Nigel Bramley learnt to play the cornet at the age of 10. He soon joined his first band, Soham Comrades, where he spent 25 years, the last 15 of those as their principal cornet.

Since 2003 Nigel has been playing solo cornet in the Virtuosi GUS Band.

Nigel was invited to take up the helm at Littleport in 2007 where he guided the band to a top three finish in the Third Section L&SC Area Contest. Since then, under Nigel’s direction, the band has continued to make progress both on the contest and the concert stage.

Test Piece Views:
Though not as technically demanding as the Area test piece, it is a challenge musically.

It does feel more suited as a concert work, and it is disappointing that it doesn’t give the band’s soloists chance to shine.

band logoLlwydcoed

Conductor: Nigel Seaman

The band was formed in 1912 and this is its fourth appearance at the National Finals in recent years.

The band was originally formed in 1912 and according to former bandsmen was made up of members of the local Llwydcoed AFC.

However during the Second World War rehearsals were suspended and the band restarted in 1947.

Like many lower section outfits, the band has known its fair share of ups and downs during this time but the last decade has seen consistent and steady growth.

In recent years they have won numerous local and national contests, including the National Eisteddfod, Welsh Area championships, Burry Port and Blaenavon Welsh League contests and being crowned Welsh League champions.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Nicholas Brill
Solo Euphonium: John Jones
Soprano: Ian Johnson
Flugel: Nadine Citric-Williams
Solo Horn: Stephen Halfpenny
Baritone: David Groves
Solo Trombone:– Ian Howe
Eb Bass: Mark Wilkes
Bb Bass: Dean Paul Stephens
Percussion: Craig Maunder

Region: Wales
Qualified: 2nd (G. Davies)

Nigel Seaman was born in Denbigh, North Wales and began his brass-playing career with Rhyl Silver Band. He then went on to study at the Royal Manchester and Royal Northern Colleges of Music.

On graduating he moved to South Wales in 1975 to join the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera as Principal Tuba and two years later moved on to the post of Principal Tuba with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales – position he held with distinction until his recent retirement.

During the last 30 years he has directed over 350 contest performances and many more concert appearances with over forty different bands, gaining prizes at all major contests at the highest level from the European Championships and British Open to the National Finals.

He remains a leading adjudicator, teacher and conductor and is demand all over the banding world.

Test Piece Views:
The Band is really enjoying getting to grips with the test piece. It’s a great choice and we are really looking forward to performing it in Cheltenham.

band logoLympstone SW Telecom

Conductor: Charles Fleming

Lympstone is a village situated between Exeter and Exmouth. The band has been part of village life since around 1889 but only achieved moderate success up to the 1970s.

In 1997 the band become West of England Fourth Section Champions and went on to represent the Area at four consecutive Finals, becoming National Fourth Section Champions 1999.

The following year they gained a podium place at the Finals in the Third Section, and promotion to the Second Section saw a further Finals appearance 12 months later.

They enjoyed a prolonged period in the First Section, before being relegated, but will return once more in 2013.

The band is very grateful for their continued sponsorship from Tony Rowe and his South West Telecoms company. Due to this partnership the band also enjoys opportunities to play at prestigious fixtures of the Exeter Chiefs English Premiership rugby team.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Bryony Snell
Principal Euphonium: Colin McEwen
Soprano: Paul Luford
Solo Horn: Sandie Heyworth
Principal Trombone: Robert Steel
Flugel: Paul Vodden
Baritone: Brent Heyworth
Eb Bass: Gill Hawkins
Bb Bass: Colin Dance
Principal Percussionist: Tim Gittins

Region: West of England
Qualified: Winners (C. Fleming)

Charlie has been the MD of Lympstone since 1997. In that time the band has qualified for the National Finals on seven occasions including this year.

He was the conductor of the band when they became National Champions in 1999 and the following year when they were placed 3rd in the Third Section finals. His time with Lympstone has seen the band rise from Fourth to First Section.

Charlie is a trombone player who spent 35 years in the Royal Marines Band Service which included 10 years as principal trombone in the Royal Yacht Britannia Band. He is an Associate of the Royal College of Music holding the ARCM diploma in Trombone Performance.

Test Piece Views:
The band think it is a wonderful piece of music skilfully arranged for Brass Band and the band really enjoy playing it.

band logoMossley

Conductor: Duncan Byers

The Mossley Temperance Band was formed in 1841 and soon made its mark winning the first British Open at Belle Vue.

In 1897 they won the British open again under the baton of Alex Owen and created history by scoring maximum points unequalled to this day.

Despite this mixed fortunes over the years, they bounced back after each set back and in 1965 won the Grand Shield to qualify once again for the British Open.

The band won prizes at the famous Edinburgh Festival and the BBC radio Manchester Blow by Blow competition twice, and in 1972 were runners up at the Wills Championships at the Royal Albert Hall.

In recent years the band has reached the National Finals in 1996, 2000, 2001, finishing runners up in 2000.

Under the baton of Duncan Byers the band has been rebuilding and has got back to winning ways, claiming the Butlins Mineworkers Championship in 2011 and 2012, Wychavon Entertainment contest and North West Area titles.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: John Taylor
Principal Euphonium: Neil Riley
Soprano: Mike Mclean
Solo Horn: Ian Wilkinson
Principal Trombone: Joe Stringer
Flugel: Roger Meaden
Baritone: Danny Catlow
Eb Bass: Ian Riley
Bb Bass: Mark Neild
Principal Percussionist: David Jarvis

Region: North West
Qualified: Winners (D. Byers)

Duncan Byers began playing cornet with Flimby Saxhorn Band. He went on to become a member of the National Youth Brass Band, Besses O' th' Barn, and, in 1994, assistant Principal Cornet with Grimethorpe Colliery Band, with whom he starred in the film Brassed Off.

In 2000 Duncan moved to Brighouse & Rastrick, where he achieved many contest successes. He continues to work as a Subject Leader for Brass and Percussion at Oldham Music Centre, and was appointed MD of Mossley Band in 2006.

Test Piece Views:
The band has really enjoyed working on the intricacies of this piece and all are in agreement that it is a fantastic piece of music.

band logoOtterbourne Brass

Conductor: Gareth Pritchard

Otterbourne Brass was formed as Hampshire Concert Brass in 1974 and changed its name to City of Winchester Brass in the 80s and finally to Otterbourne Brass in 2004 having moved to its new home in the village of Otterbourne.

The band provides music in the local area performing at Remembrance Services and local fetes to P&O sailings and village activities. The band also competes locally in the Wessex BBA & SCABA contests.

Otterbourne previously qualified for the National Finals in 2004 and 2008. In 2012 they qualified for by coing runner-up at in Torquay under the baton of Gareth Pritchard. They will be promoted to the First Section from 2013.

The band also claimed a podium finish the A Section of the SCABA Entertainments Contest in May this year under the baton of Gareth.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Hugh Cameron
Principal Euphonium: Graham Jones
Soprano: George Arnold
Solo Horn: Helen Davis
Principal Trombone: Neil Brownless
Flugel: Nicky Robbins
Baritone: Keith Badman
Eb Bass: Ian Yardley
Bb Bass: Ian Austin
Principal Percussionist: Chris Mead

Region: West of England
Qualified: 2nd (G. Pritchard)

Gareth was born in Ynyshir in the Rhondda Valley. He began playing cornet and studied with David Thomas and Ieuan Morgan MBE, OBE.

He entered Trinity College of Music in 1974 to study Trumpet with Norman Burgess, Composition with Vera Ayton and Conducting with Bernard Keefe, attaining LTCL and being admitted as a Fellow of the College.

Gareth has played principal cornet for several leading bands and has come under the influence of many famous conductors. He was Cornet Solo Champion of Great Britain in 1977 and 1979 and has performed regularly as a soloist all over the world.

In 1991 Gareth moved to Norway and enjoyed considerable conducting success, winning National titles at three different levels (including Elite) with four bands and claiming the prestigious SIDDIS Brass title with Sandefjord Brass Symposium Band.

Since returning to the UK he has been Professional Conductor for Besses o’ th’ Barn, Bodmin Town and BTM Bands and also MD for EYMS Band. He is in demand as an adjudicator and is a member of the ABBA.

Test Piece Views:
The Band are enjoying working on Brahms "Academic Festival Overture" and are finding it a challenge to play it as Brahms would have wanted it to sound and not as a Brass Band!

band logoThundersley

Conductor: John Ward

Thundersley is situated on the Thames Estuary west of Southend on Sea.

The band was formed in 1980 from a nucleus of young local players, some of who are still current band members. In the late 1980's and early 1990's the band achieved regular success including qualifying for the National Finals in 1989.

Their journey to success gathered momentum in 2006 when they were crowned London & Southern Counties 4th Section Champions, gaining promotion to the 3rd Section. Success continued and in 2011 the band won the 2011 Area contest and then secured 4th place at the National Finals.

The band claimed the Area title again in 2012 and looks forward to competing at Cheltenham. The band also performs at numerous concerts, charitable events, private functions and civic events each year.

Principal players:
Principal cornet: Gavin Hall
Solo Euphonium: Jeff Kier
Soprano: Andy Hornsby
Principal horn: Kelly Hall
Principal trom: Tom Challinor
Flugel: Rhys Cave
Baritone: Paul Hicks
Eb Bass: Ben Miller
Bb Bass: Norman Smith
Percussion: Mark Gibson

Region: London & Southern Counties
Qualified: Winners (J. Ward)

No details given

Test Piece Views:
The band have been working hard and are enjoying preparing the Academic Festival Overture.

band logoYork Railway Institute

Conductor: Gordon Eddison

York Railway Institute Band was established in 1883 and since that time has had several names and homes, but, despite often-turbulent times and fortunes, has remained an active an successful band.

It was the first band in the York area to achieve Championship Section status, and many outstanding players have started their careers at the 'Institute' and have gone on to play for the very best bands and orchestras in the world.

York Railway Institute Band has established a reputation for entertaining the public with its lively concert performances, and regularly appears at the National Railway Museum in York and at theatres, halls and concert venues all over the UK.

Having performed consistently well over the last few years the band was promoted to the 2nd Section nationally in 2012 where soon after they gained second place in the North of England Area Championship – earning a second successive Finals appearance.

Earlier this year the band also competed in the Whit Friday Marches where they were runners-up in the 2nd Section at Greenacres.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Sam Lovatt
Principal Euphonium: Richard Lovatt
Soprano: James West
Solo Horn: Linda Bruce
Principal Trombone: Nick Eastwood
Flugel: Charles Tomlinson
Baritone: Dawn Groves
Eb Bass: Chris Hirst
Bb Bass: Ant Edwards
Principal Percussionist: Francesca Rochester

Region: North of England
Qualified: 2nd (G. Eddison)

Gordon Eddison started his musical career at the age of 11 when he was encouraged to join the Hammonds Sauce Works Junior Band by his brass teacher Geoff Whitham.

He went on to play with Yorkshire Imperial Metals Band before a career in the police service intervened and he spent a few years playing with The Hawley Band.

Gordon was awarded a Bachelor of Education Honours Degree and has still found time to play on occasions with many leading Yorkshire bands.

He has enjoyed contesting success conducting Elland Band at Pontins and the Yorkshire Area and took up full-time brass teaching on his retirement from the Police seven years ago and currently teaches for Education Leeds Music Service.

Gordon came to the band just under three years ago and together they have qualified for three successive Finals appearances, as wella s winning the Area title and the Northern Open.

Test Piece Views:
It has been a long time favourite of everyone. Well transcribed and faithful to the original. Really tests musicianship from everybody.

band logoBilton Silver (Rugby)

Conductor: David Stowell

Since 1893, Bilton Silver (Rugby) Band’s mission has been to serve its community. The band does this with two bands; a Training Band - currently a thriving group of over 40 players, whose ages range from 5 to 82, and a main band – a Second Section contesting band with around 35 members who travel from as near as a few hundred yards to many miles away.

The main band continues to build its reputation through nurturing players with individual memberships of up to fifty years of service. They welcome capable and committed bandsman, ensuring a healthy mix of skill and raw talent across a broad range of experiences, together with the policy of introducing less experienced players from the Training Band.

The band boasts its second return to the National Finals in as many years - as Midland’s 2nd Section Champions – a first in the band’s history.

They are proud to boast only one major change in the personnel from last year, whilst the band is currently in the process of building its new rehearsal facilities.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Sheila Allen
Principal Euphonium: Neil Kelsall
Soprano: Alister Rowe
Solo Horn: Paul Bennett
Principal Trombone: Laura Moran
Flugel: Judith Hayes
Baritone: Mary Goodland
Eb Bass: Craig Bangham
Bb Bass: Matthew Moran
Principal percussionist: Jack Fisher

Region: Midlands
Qualified: Winners (D. Stowell)

David began his career at the Royal Military School of Music and on leaving HM Coldstream Guards furthered his studies in London and Boston.

He continued to work with several leading orchestras including The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

In the banding field he has conducted many bands including Black Dyke, Grimethorpe and was the Professional Conductor of the GUS Band.

Following an opportunity to score a drama production in America (The Lake) David has worked as a composer on many television and radio productions.

He has also been nominated for a Queens Award for Television for 'Best Original Score'.

He is married to the cellist Helen Barber and they have two children.

Test Piece Views:
There was no overwhelming response either way when the choice of test piece was announced, but the preparation process has been an enjoyable one and one that we hope comes across when we do the business on the day.

band logoShirebrook MW Unison

Conductor: Mark Wilcockson

The band was formed in 1903 in the North East Derbyshire village of Shirebrook.

They enjoyed many contest successes including being prize winners in the Grand Shield in 1927 and in 1949 came under the wing of the Miners Welfare Scheme.

The band recently made a slight alteration to their logo to include a small white dove. This is to remember the many years of work and dedication given to the band by stalwart member Geoff Dove who is fondly remembered as both a player and band secretary.

Recent successes has seen National Finals appearances at Harrogate in 2010 and highly successful contesting seasons in both 2011 & 2012, including their recent qualification for Cheltenham and winning at the Buxton contest.

The band will be promoted to the First Section in 2013.

Principal players:
Principal cornet: Glenn Birks
Principal euphonium: Jayne Jones
Soprano: Mark Brimble
Solo horn: Neil Emson
Solo trombone: Natalie Tyrrell
Flugel: Roy Briscoe
Baritone: John Hudson
Eb bass: Ruth Cartlidge
Bb bass: Graham Buckley
Principal percussionist: John Beazer

Region: Midlands
Qualified: 2nd (M. Wilcockson)

Mark started his banding at the William Rhodes School Band in Chesterfield on euphonium. He made the step up to Championship banding with the Webb Ivory Newhall Band and performed with them at the British Open.

Mark moved back to Rhodian Brass to enjoy many successful years on solo euphonium before combining playing and conducting for a period.

After finishing his playing career he enjoyed succesful connections with a number of bands in the Midlands and currently conducts both Shirebrook Miners Welfare Unison Band and Bakewell Silver Band.

During his time at Shirebrook, Mark has guided them to consecutive back to back Butlins titles and excellent area performances resulting in claiming 2nd Section status in 2010.

Mark is the managing director of The Corrugated Case Company in Chesterfield, manufacturing corrugated transit and point of sale packaging.

Test Piece Views
As a band we had hoped for a piece that showcased technical ability as well as musicality. We have no doubt that all the bands will be able to play this piece and it will ultimately come down to style and interpretation on the day.

band logoCity of Bradford

Conductor: Lee Skipsey

The history of the City of Bradford Band can be traced back to the early twentieth century and the Salt’s Mill Band of Saltaire.

The band has had a number of different sponsors and names over the years, including Hammonds Hawley Brass Band and Yorkshire Building Society Concert Brass.

In 2006, the Yorkshire Building Society withdrew their funding and the band became an entity in its own right and subsequently became the City of Bradford Band in 2009.

The band was crowned Third Section National Champions in 20111, and in addition have been Northern Open Champions in two consecutive years, taking the Second and Third section crowns in 2010 and 2011 respectively, as well as winning an array of prizes at the Whit Friday, Hebden Bridge and Morley march contests over the last two years.

Earlier this year, the band released their debut CD ‘Illuminate’ and in September are due to appear in a Sky 1 documentary forming part of the ‘Winners’ series.

Principal players:
Principal Cornet: Tim Pool
Principal Euphonium: Adrian Harrison
Soprano Cornet: Claire Allen
Solo Horn: Nicola Storey
Principal Trombone: Matthew Renshaw
Flugel: Chris Barnes
Principal Baritone: Jim Binns
Principal Eb Bass: Kerry Lewis
Principal Bb Bass: Simon Hunter
Principal Percussionist: Andy Marshall

Region: Yorkshire
Qualified: 2nd (L. Skipsey)

Lee joined the City of Bradford in 2010 and has managed to transform the band from a skeletal membership of just 12 players.

In the last 12 months the band has not only qualified for the National Championships, but also secured numerous prizes. Lee was brought up in the Salvation Army at the Regent Hall Corps on London’s Oxford Street.

His love was always for percussion, and in 2002 he joined Black Dyke. As Principal Percussionist, Lee played on over 50 recordings and in over 20 different countries.

In 2006 he was Black Dyke’s ‘Player of the Year’.

Lee has worked with the likes of James Morrison, Evelyn Glennie and Sir Colin Davis. He is currently a tutor for the National Children's Brass Band, the National Youth Brass Band, and the Brass Band Summer School.

Test Piece Views:
It’s been great for the band to rehearse such a different animal of a test piece, and we think Johannes Brahms would have loved a brass band contest, especiallyone with this particular piece at the centre.

band logoSouth Milford Band

Conductor: Martin Hall

South Milford Brass, originally know as Hambleton Brass, was formed in 1982.

The band achieved First Section status in 1991 but the following years saw a period of decline with the band almost folding in 1996.

In 2008 South Milford Brass won the Fourth Section at North of England Regionals, gaining promotion to the Third Section nationally, and achieved 7th place in their first appearance at the National Finals.

Since then the band has enjoyed considerable success and celebrated its 25th Anniversary in 2007 with a concert which was attended by over 300 past and present players and associates of the band and their families.

Principal players:
Principal cornet: Claire Bramley
Principal euphonium: Robin Morgan
Soprano: Richard Robinson
Solo horn: Lindsey Abell
Solo trombone: Alex Evans
Flugel: Sonia Threlfall
Baritone: Sarah Neal
Eb bass: Ken Smith
Bb bass: Pete Smith
Principal percussionist: Chris Snowdon

Region: North of England
Qualified: Winners (M. Hall)

Born in Wakefield in, Martin started playing the cornet in the local brass band where his father and brother played.

He went on to study cornet under James Shepherd for over a decade and then with Richard Marshall.

Martins’ cornet playing has taken him to play for Championship bands Wakefield Metropolitan, Knottingley, Drighlington and Black Dyke and he has competed at all major top section contests.

It is with great pleasure and excitement that Martin has taken on the role as MD with South Milford Brass, and he looks forward to developing the band on both the contest and concert platform.

Test Piece Views:
None given


Sunday 14 July • Pemberton Old Wigan Brass Bands. Enfield Street,. Pemberton,. Wigan WN5 8DZ


Friday 19 July • Pemberton Old Wigan Band . Enfield Street,. Pemberton,. Wigan. WN5 8DZ

Barnsley Brass - Stephen Sykes, Principal Trombone of The Cory Band

Saturday 20 July • St Mary's Church, Kippax, Leeds LS25 7HF

Boarshurst Silver Band - Sunday Brass Concert - Skelmanthorpe Band

Sunday 21 July • Boarshurst Band Club, Greenbridge Lane OL3 7EW

Boarshurst Silver Band - Sunday Brass Concert - Phoenix Brass

Sunday 28 July • Boarshurst Band Club, Greenbridge Lane OL3 7EW


July 18 • Middleton Band (NW Area) have vacancies for Baritone, Eb or Bb Bass and Percussion. . Rehearsals are held on Monday & Thursday at 8pm under Musical Director Jamie Cooper.

Camborne Youth Band

July 16 • Camborne Brass (2nd Section). We are aiming to bolster urgently our cornet section with both front and back row cornets (all positions negotiable). We are also expanding our training section. All ages and abilities are welcome from beginners upwards.

Dobcross Silver Band

July 15 • 2 x Cornet Players required. Positions are negotiable, excluding Principal as players are willing to move around. Experience preferred but all ages considered if ability can be demonstrated. Enjoyable rehearsals/great socials!

John Maines

BA (Hons)
Presenter, compere and conductor


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