The death has been announced of former Dobcross, Delph, CWS Manchester and Fairey Band soprano and cornet player, Herbert H. Howarth. He was aged 95.
Born in Dobcross in 1921, 'Bert' first learned to play the bugle alongside his father, eventually joining Dobcross on cornet where he was a member of the band that won the Golden Jubilee July Belle Vue Contest in 1935.
Prisoner of war
At the outbreak of the Second World War he joined the Duke of Wellington's Yorkshire Regiment, but was captured and became a prisoner of war. On his repatriation he returned to the Royal Army Medical Corps Band.
In later years he revealed that he learned most of his musical skills while a POW with fellow soldiers teaching him different styles of playing and a great deal about music theory.
He was one of the few prisoners who later wrote about his experiences in two books published by Age UK which were sold to raise money for the organisation.
After the War he joined the re-formed Delph Band, becoming a feared slow melody contest specialist, and eventually joined the CWS Manchester Band under Alex Mortimer.
Following an enquiry to join Munn & Felton Band he left to join Fairey, where he spent over 25 years in a couple of enjoyable and successful spells. During this time he was part of the band that won the hat-trick at the British Open in 1961, 62, 63.
He also enjoyed a distinguished conducing career with bands such as Wingates, Goodshaw, Dobcross, Marsden and Meltham amongst others, helping them to win a number of local and regional events. In 1976 he led Linthwaite to a podium finish at the Second Section National Finals.
He was also very active in the Conductors Association and an excellent teacher with a renowned reputation. Many of his pupils went on to play at the highest level. He was still teaching to the very end of his full and rewarding life.
Following an enquiry to join Munn & Felton Band he left to join Fairey, where he spent over 25 years in a couple of enjoyable and successful spells. During this time he was part of the band that won the hat-trick at the British Open in 1961, 62, 634BR
The funeral is at Delph Methodist Church, Gartside Street, Delph on Wednesday 15th November at 1.30pm.
The cortege will be preceded by an 'All Comers' band (for which all players are welcome) from Bert's home to the church playing from the red hymn book and march book. Players can meet at Delph Band Club at 12.15pm.