Report & Results: 2022 Saddleworth & Oldham Whit Friday

Black Dyke returns in triumph to Saddleworth as they claim the Whit Friday title on a Knight to remember.

Whit Friday
  Black Dyke claimed their first Whit Friday title sicne 2015

Black Dyke Band returned to the Whit Friday winning enclosure for the first time since 2015 after securing four victories and around £7,000 in total prize money on the Saddleworth & Oldham District circuit on the weekend.

Led by Director of Music, Prof Nicholas Childs and playing the classic 'Knight Templar' march, they topped the tables at Denshaw, Dobcross, Greenfield and Lydgate.

Their 'Top 6' of results was supplemented by a runner-up finish at Grotton and third place at Diggle.

No better place

No wonder the MD was a happy man when 4BR caught up with him after a busy weekend that also saw his band give successful concerts in Dunstable and Huddersfield.

"There is no better place to enjoy community brass banding than Whit Friday,"Prof Childs told 4BR. "With the sun out, great crowds, brilliant bands and fantastic marches there is nothing like it anywhere in the world.

It gave everyone such a lift to return this year, and our thanks should go to all the local organisers who make the events possible. We certainly enjoyed it!"

Brighouse second

The Queensbury band's high-class performances saw them repel the challenge of rivals and defending champion Brighouse & Rastrick.

Wearing their traditional Whit Friday marching uniforms, with MD Ian McElligott also sporting a purple waistcoat for the occasion, they were looking for a fifth consecutive title.

It wasn't to be, although the West Riding band secured the honours at Delph and Lees & Springhead with runner-up finishes at Denshaw, Dobcross, Greenfield, Lydgate and Scouthead & Austerlands in an admirable display of 'Knight Templar' consistency that saw them end the night boosting the coffers with over £4,900.

Photo finish

There was a rare photo-finish for the final podium place, with Oldham Band (Lees) pipping WFEL Fairey after the organisers had to take into account their best seventh contest finish after the duo ended tied on their 'Top 6' placings.

In what is turning into a memorable year, MD John Collins once again inspired his locally based band with the march 'The Wizard' (the MD a resident of Scouthead and with the band rehearsing on the family farm), claiming a brace victories at Diggle and Scouthead & Austerlands to boost their funds by over £3,300.

It meant that WFEL Fairey, who didn't claim a victory but secured five podium finishes playing 'Knight Templar', just missed out on the £750 in prize money for coming third overall.

Turn out

With the contests making their long-awaited return, the indefatigable organisers will have been highly encouraged by the turn out of competitors. Delph boasted 73 entrants with over 60 playing at Dobcross, Greenfield, Lydgate and Scouthead & Austerlands.

Fifth place overall went to Hepworth who played 'Ravenswood', whilst West of England Area champion Aldbourne enjoyed their long haul trip north appearance in coming sixth performing 'The Wizard'..

March contest specialists, Marsden Silver claimed the £750 'Best Local Band' helped by victory at Uppermill, to finish ahead of Milnrow and Boarshurst.

There were also plenty of other enjoyable performances from the likes of scratch band Chav Brass who showed that despite the fun approach the seriousness of their playing shone through to come seventh overall.

Packed crowds

Elsewhere, packed crowds bathed in the sunshine enjoyed renditions from the aptly named Trom Boney-M, Bad Ass Brass, Dobcross Brass Monkeys and The Mamas and Parpers, as well as university students from Bangor, Durham, York, Edinburgh, Warwick, Sheffield and Lancaster and the great traditional competitors of Meltham & Meltham Mills and Slaithwaite.

The attraction of the unique Whit Friday 'experience' also saw bands make the trip from just about all areas of the UK and beyond.

The crowds certainly enjoyed the march rendition of 'Sweet Dreams' from Amersham Band as well as the playing of Emmental Band from Switzerland and Skeie Brass from Norway who impressed with their precision and enthusiasm.

National champion Foden's also made time to venture in Saddleworth to win at Grotton and come third at Uppermill to add a cash boost to their overall Tameside winnings.

Youth highlight

The splendid sight and sound of Wardle Academy Youth Band (and their sibling Blast Band) was certainly one of the highlights of the day (coming 22nd overall), with their outstanding performances seeing them secure the 'Best Youth Band' title and a huge boost to their funds.

They can now broadly boast a CV that includes the European, Brass in Concert and National Youth Championship titles — the banner they carried around with them just having enough space to add the extra bit of embroidery.

Others also should that the event was one of inclusion with Oldham Music Centre Youth, 2nd Rossendale Scouts, Dobcross Youth and Training Bands, Delph and HD9 Community Youth Bands all enjoying their experience.

On a day of great enjoyment, the joy of Whit Friday music making was placed into perspective when the Diggle contest understandably came to an end following a medical emergency.

The prompt action of volunteers ensured that the player was cared for before they were taken to hospital where it is understood they are recuperating.

Malcolm Wood

It gave everyone such a lift to return this year, and our thanks should go to all the local organisers who make the events possible. We certainly enjoyed it!Prof Nicholas Childs

Overall Result:

Champions: Black Dyke — £2,500
2. Brighouse & Rastrick — £1,000
3. Oldham Band (Lees) — £750
4. WFEL Fairey
5. Hepworth Band
6. Aldbourne
7. Chav Brass
8. Marsden Silver
9. Hammonds Band
10. Milnrow

Best Local: Marsden Silver — £750
Runner-up: Milnrow — £600
Third: Boarshurst — £400

Best Youth: Wardle Academy Youth — £250


(73 Bands)
Adjudicator: Leigh Baker

1. Brighouse & Rastrick — £1,000
2. WEFL Fairey
3. Rothwell Temperance
4. Albourne
5. Oldham Band (Lees)
6. Chav Brass

Highest placed non-Championship band: Emmental Band (Switzerland)

Local: Milnrow
Runner-up: Diggle

Best Saddleworth: Boarshurst Silver
Best Third/Fourth Section: Skeie Brass and Penrith Town (shared)
Best Youth: Wardle Academy
Runner-up: Oldham Music Centre

Best Soprano: Brighouse & Rastrick
Best Trombones: Brighouse & Rastrick
Best Solo Cornet: WEFL Fairey
Best Euphonium: Aldbourne
Best Basses: Hebden Bridge


(55 Bands)
Adjudicator: Allan Holdsworth

1. Black Dyke — £1000
2. Brighouse & Rastrick — £600
3. Diggle — £400
4. Hepworth — £200
5. Bad Ass Brass
6. Oldham Band (Lees)

Best First Section:
1. Hebden Bridge — £100
2. Lindley — £75

Best Second Section:
1. Slaithwaite — £100
2. Haslingden & Helmshore — £75

Best Third Section:
1. Syston — £100
2. City of Chester — £75

Best Fourth Section:
1. Dobcross Silver — £100
2. Littleborough — £75

Best Saddleworth:
1. Boarshurst Silver — £150
2. Uppermill — £125

Best Local:
1. Oldham Band (Lees) — £100

Best Non-UK Band:
1. Brass Band Emmental (Switzerland) — £100

Best Youth Band:
1. Wardle Academy — £100
2. Wardle Junior Blast — £75

Best Soprano: Brighouse & Rastrick
Best Bass Section: Black Dyke — £40
Spot Prize: Salvo Brass — £100


(44 Bands)
Adjudicator: Helen Douthwaite-Teasdale

1. Oldham Band (Lees) — £800
2. Hepworth — £500
3. Black Dyke — £400
4. Chav Brass — £250
5. WFEL Fairey
6. Brighouse & Rastrick

Best First/Second Section: Marsden Silver — £150
Runner-up: Haslingden — £100
Best Third/Fourth Section: BMP Europe — £150
Best Unregistered Band: Three Counties Brass — £100

Peter Blacker Prize: Deepcar — £60
Best Saddleworth Band: Boarshurst — £125
Best Youth Band: Oldham Music Centre — £100
Holden Cup: Milnrow — £100

Best Soprano: Hepworth — £30
Best Solo Cornet: Oldham Band (Lees) — £30
Best Bass Section: Black Dyke — £60
Best Euphonium: Hepworth — £30
Best Instrumentalist (not in Championship Section): Marsden Silver — £30
Best Youth Soloist: 2nd Rossendale Scouts — £50
Best Band on the march: 2md Rossendale Scouts — £50


(61 Bands)
Adjudicator: Brian Rostron

1. Black Dyke — £750
2. Brighouse & Rastrick — £500
3. WFEL Fairey — £400
4. Oldham Band (Lees)
5. Ratby Co-operative
6. Aldbourne

Best Saddleworth Band: Boarshurst Silver — £200
Best Local Band: Oldham Band (Lees)
Best Local Band Whit Friday morning: tbc — £75

1. Wardle Academy Youth — £150
2. Oldham Music Centre — £150

Best Youth Soprano: Wardle Academy Youth
Best Youth Trombone: Wardle Academy Youth


(39 Bands)
Adjudicator: Tim Newbigging

1. Skeie Brass — £200
2. Dobcross Silver
3. Whitworth Vale & Healey
4. City of Chester
5. Lostock Hall Memorial
6. Hawk Green

Best Fourth Section Band:
1. Skeie Brass

1. Oldham Music Centre
2. 2nd Rossendale Scouts

Best Cornet: City of Chester
Best Basses: 2nd Rossendale Scouts
Best Deportment: 2nd Rossendale Scouts
Best Entertainment: Oldham Music Centre
Best University: University of Sheffield Brass Band


(68 Bands)
Adjudicator: Chris Wormald

1. Black Dyke — £1,000
2. Brighouse & Rastrick
3. WFEL Fairey
4. Marsden Silver
5. Chav Brass
6. Milnrow

Best First Section:
1. Marsden Silver
2. Longridge

Best Second Section:
1. Lostock Hall Memorial
2. Diggle

Best Third Section:
1. Rode Hall Silver
2. Wardle Academy Youth

Best Fourth Section:
1. Skeie Brass
2. Penrith Town
3. Littleborough

Best Youth:
1. Wardle Academy Youth
2. Dobcross Youth

Best Youth Soloist: Wardle Academy Youth
Best Saddleworth Youth: Dobcross Youth
Best Local Band: Oldham Band (Lees)
Best Saddleworth Band: Boarshurst Silver
Best Overseas Band: Skeie Brass

Best Euphonium: Black Dyke
Best Solo Cornet: Black Dyke

1. Bad Ass Brass
2. Tottington Public

1. Chav Brass
2. Ratby Co-operative


(47 Bands)
Adjudicator: Christopher Bond

1. Foden's — £700
2. Black Dyke
3. Brighouse & Rastrick
4. Hammonds
5. Oldham Band (Lees)
6. Leyland

Best First Section: Hebden Bridge
Runner-up: Marsden Silver Prize

Best Second Section: Haslingden & Helmshore
Runner-up: Delph

Best Third/Fourth Section: Lostock Hall Memorial
Runner-up: Whitworth Vale & Healey

Best Local: Oldham Band (Lees)
Runner-up: Marsden Silver Prize

Best Youth: Wardle Academy Youth
Runner-up: Oldham music Centre Youth

Deportment: Brass Band Emmental
Youth Deportment: Wardle Academy Youth

Best Cornet: Oldham Band (Lees)
Best Soprano: Amersham

Lees & Springhead

(40 Bands)
Adjudicator: Alan Fernie

1. Brighouse & Rastrick — £500
2. WFEL Fairey
3. Oldham Band (Lees)
4. Aldbourne
5. Marsden Silver
6. Hepworth

First Section:
1. Marsden Silver Prize
Runner-up: Ashton under Lyne

Second Section:
1. Delph
Runner-up: Diggle

Third Section:
1. Whitworth Vale & Healey
Runner-up: Lostock Hall Memorial

Fourth Section:
1. Stalybridge Old
Runner-up: Tottington Public

Youth Section:
1. Wardle Academy Youth
Runner-up: Oldham Music Centre Youth

Best Local: Milnrow
Best in Oldham MBC: Boarshurst

Best Cornet: Brighouse & Rastrick
Best Euphonium: Brighouse & Rastrick

Deportment: Oldham Band (Lees)
Youth Deportment: Wardle Academy Youth


(65 Bands)
Adjudicator: Sam Fisher

1. Black Dyke — £850
2. Brighouse & Rastrick
3. WFEL Fairey
4. Hepworth
5. Bas Ass Brass
6. Chav Brass

Best First Section: Marsden Silver Prize
Runner-up: Silk Brass

Best Second Section: Haslingden & Helmshore
Runner-up: Diggle

Best Third Section: Hawk Green
Runner-up: Ratby Co-operative Mid

Best Fourth Section: Skeie Brass (Norway)
Runner-up: Putney & Wimbledon Brass

Best Local Band: Oldham Band (Lees)
Runner-up: Diggle

Best Youth Band: Wardle Academy Youth
Runner-up: Oldham Music Centre Youth Brass

Best Scratch Band: Bad Ass Brass

Deportment: Black Dyke
Junior Deportment: Oldham Music Centre Youth Brass

Best Trombones: Bad Ass Brass
Best Basses: Oldham Band (Lees)
Best Euphonium: Black Dyke
Best Cornet: Brighouse & Rastrick
Best Youth Soprano: Wardle Academy Youth

Scouthead & Austerlands:

(63 Bands)
Adjudicator: Jonathan Pippen

1. Oldham Band (Lees) — £1000
2. Brighouse & Rastrick — £600
3. Leyland — £400
4. Aldbourne — £300
5. Hepworth
6. Langley

First Section:
1. Langley — £150
2. Brass Band Emmental — £100
3. Mossley — £50

Second Section:
1. Uppermill — £150
2. Meltham & Meltham Mills — £100
3. Haslingden & Helmshore — £50

Third Section:
1. Hawk Green (Marple) — £150
2. Pendeen Silver — £100
3. Rode Hall Silver — £50

Fourth Section:
1. Dobcross Silver — £150
2. Backworth Colliery — £100
3. WEM Jubilee — £50

Highest Placed Overseas Band: Skeie Brass — £100

Best Local:
1. Milnrow — £150
2. Marsden Silver — £100
3. Slaithwaite — £50

Best Youth:
1. Wardle Academy — £150
2. 2nd Rossendale Scouts — £100
3. Dobcross Youth — £50

Best Saddleworth:
1. Diggle — £150
2. Friezland — £100
3. Diggle Community Brass — £50

Deportment: Mossley — £50
Junior Deportment: Wardle Academy Youth — £50

Best Soloist: Solo Cornet (Leyland) — £30
Best Soprano: Brighouse & Rastrick — £30
Best Bass Section: Hepworth — £50
Best Bass Trombone: Oldham Band (Lees) — £30
First Band to Play: Edinburgh University — £30


(50 Bands)
Adjudicator: David Marshall

1. Marsden Silver — £1000
2. Chav Brass — £300
3. Foden's — £250
4. Oldham Band (Lees) — £200
5. Aldbourne
6. WFEL Fairey

Best First Section:
1. Emmental Band (Switzerland) — £150
2. Old Hall Brass — £100

Best Second Section:
1. Meltham & Meltham Mills — £150
2. Delph — £100

Best Third Section:
1. Hawk Green Band — £150
2. Rode Hall Silver — £100

Best Fourth Section:
1. Littleborough Brass — £150
2. Friezeland — £100

Best Local: Boarshurst Silver — £175
Best Saddleworth: Uppermill

Best Youth:
1. Wardle Academy Youth
2. Oldham Music Centre Youth

Deportment: Emmental Band (Switzerland)
Local Deportment: Meltham & Meltham Mills
Youth Deportment: Wardle Academy Youth

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