Black Dyke completed their nationwide 'Bandstand Tour' with a visit to the south of England to Boscombe and Bournemouth.
It may have been a six hour drive on a coach from Queensbury, but the ensemble under the direction of Prof Nicholas Childs was made to feel very much at home thanks to the welcome that was as warm as the weather at Boscombe's Fisherman's Walk Bandstand.
"It's not often we get to perform on traditional bandstands, and especially when its 31 degrees!", Principal cornet Richard Marshall told 4BR. "The welcome though was wonderful and it was so good to perform to people sat out enjoying the weather and the music."
Black Dyke performed alongside Boscombe Salvation Army Band, with the musical partnership enhanced when Prof Childs accepted the invitation to conduct Boscombe in James Anderson's 'Pioneers'.
The gesture was reciprocated when Boscombe Deputy Bandmaster Kevin Whittingham conducted Black Dyke in the march, 'Redcliffe', in memory of his father, Ged, a former flugel horn player of Boscombe and lifelong 'Pondasher' supporter of Black Dyke.
Prof Childs told 4BR: "This was a great way to round the tour off — and a great reminder of the appetite for live brass band music making the length and breadth of country.
The response to our performance has been so heartening and has brought Black Dyke a new connection with audiences which we now hope to build on further.
If the weather was always like this we could do these performances every week!"
Speaking about the event Boscombe Bandmaster Howard Evans told 4BR: "It was a pleasure to be part of the Bandstand tour which gave us the first opportunity to perform to an audience for over 16 months. It was a special moment for so many reasons."
The Bandstand tour was made possible with funds provided by Arts Council England and the Cultural Recovery Grant, and has been seen as a great success with messages of congratulations being received not only on the day of their visits, but also by email by eager new fans wanting to book tickets to the band's first post Covid-19 concerts.
We have been delighted by the response to the initiative. The tour represents a pathway to confidence allowing people to hear live music for the first time in 16 monthsBlack Dyke
Pathway to confidence
Reflecting on the success which has seen 11 performances from Queensbury to Bournemouth, Trevor Caffull, Chair of Black Dyke Band Trustees told 4BR: "We have been delighted by the response to the initiative.
The tour represents a pathway to confidence allowing people to hear live music for the first time in 16 months and we would particularly like to thank those who joined us such as Clifton & Lightcliffe, Ripon City, Tewit Youth, Delph, Barnsley Music Centre and the Boscombe Salvation Army band.
It was a musical roadmap that we explored and enjoyed every moment of."