One of the UK banding movement's great stalwart players has decided to retire after giving over 30 years of outstanding service to the Leyland Band.
Brian Heyes has been synonymous with the North West outfit since joining in 1987, and an integral playing and administrative part of the organisation ever since.
He also holds the unique accolade of sitting in every single cornet seat on a contest stage — including soprano, but in recent years he has used his experience to huge effect as assistant principal cornet.
His reputation as a complete player was secured many years ago — despite the great Richard Evans rather lovingly saying that he had the best 'unsympathetic' sound in banding!
His fun-loving personality has also provided many moments of entertainment at band engagements, whilst his opinions about the banding movement have always been eagerly sought.
Brian has given incredible service for so many years, and he will be a huge lossLeyland Band
A year's worth and more
At Brian's final concert at Warrington's Parr Hall, MD Tom Wyss reeled off his list of major honours including National and British Open victories. His commitment in rehearsal time alone amounted to over full year in duration — over 8760 hours.
A band spokesperson told 4BR: "Brian has given incredible service for so many years, and he will be a huge loss. His final solo received a standing ovation at every venue, and we were lucky to be able to document his remarkable career with a surprise retirement party attended by past and present Leyland players.
We wish Brian all the very best as he now looks to spend more time with his young son Jacob."
Leyland also announced that they secured the services of highly-rated Luke Pallister who takes over Brian's role as assistant principal cornet.