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2003 Midlands Regional Qualifying Championships

Fourth Section
Sunday 9th March
Starts: 11.00am

Barry Thompson

Test Piece: Lydian Pictures - Simon Dobson

The 4th Section is notoriously hard to predict, and with 18 bands, it will be a hard contest to judge for the experienced Barry Thompson.

Bands from the Midlands haven’t done too well at the National Finals themselves in recent years but they can boast one win when Shirland Miners Welfare Training took the title in 2001. The rest of the qualifiers have had mixed fortunes though and even though there has only been the one victory since 1998, four of the last five years has seen at least one representative gain a top six place.
A great set work for the band to work on and the audience to listen to and with three bands coming down from the 3rd Section there should be plenty of real contenders for the two qualifying places for Dundee.

The contest takes place a week later than the rest of the Midlands sections, so the band have an extra 7 days to put those finishing touches to their performances.

Bakewell Silver
Conductor: M. Wilcockson

Last Year: 6th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 6th
2001: 9th
2000: 15th 3rd Section (rel)
1999: 12th 3rd Section
1998: 10th 3rd Section
1997: 17th 3rd Section

Bakewell fell through the trap door after struggling for a few years in the 3rd Section, but in the last two years they have more than held their own and last year improved their position by 3 and came 6th. That should give them the confidence to try and get a possible qualification spot.

Banovallum Brass
Conductor: S. Ingham

Last Year: 7th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 7th
2001: DNC
2000: 15th
1999: DNC
1998: 12th 4th Section
1997: 15th 3rd Section (rel)

The winners here back in 1994, Banovallum have had a difficult time of late at the contest and according to the records have not played here in two of the past five years. They came back last year to come 7th, so hopefully that was a sign of better times and they will be looking for further improvement this year.

Corby Silver
Conductor: C. Stevens

Last Year: 14th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 14th
2001: 6th
2000: 13th
1999: DNC
1998: DNC
1997: DNC

Corby have held their own here since they competed in 2000 and came 6th in 2001. That has been their best result so far and they fell back a little to come 14th last year. Will be hoping for a repeat of 2001 at least.

Dronfield CMW
Conductor: TBA

Last Year: 14th 3rd Section (rel)
Last Seven Years:
2002: 14th 3rd Section (rel)
2001: 9th 3rd Section
2000: 11th 3rd Section
1999: 6th 3rd Section
1998: DNC
1997: 16th 2nd Section (rel)

Dronfield will surely be hoping for a good result here this year after being relegated from the 3rd Section after a few years in which they found it hard graft in the higher section. In 1997 they were playing in the 2nd Section so this has been a little bit of a fall. The climb back starts here.

Dunchurch Silver
Conductor: G. Smallwood

Last Year: 13th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 13th
2001: 12th
2000: 16th
1999: 10th
1998: DNC
1997: DNC

Solid performances seem to be the hallmark of Dunchurch with a best of 10th place in 1999 and 16th in 2000. 12th and 13th in the past two years has been OK, but they will be looking for something a touch higher. Culd they squeeze into the top 10 this time around?

Enderby Youth
Conductor: S. Osgood

Last Year: 11th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 11th
2001: 11th 3rd Section (rel)
2000: 5th 3rd Section
1999: 19th 3rd Section
1998: 8th 3rd Section
1997: 14th 3rd Section

Enderby returned back to the 4th Section last year after having a bit of an up and down series of results here over the past few years. A best of 5th place in the 3rd Section was replaced by 11th place in 2001 and relegation. They held their own last year and came 11th, but they will be looking for something a bit better in 2003.

Hathern 'B'
Conductor: M. Cooper

Last Year: 12th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 12th
2001: 20th
2000: DNC

A band that has made rapid improvement in the two years they have competed here, and 20th in 2001 became 12th last year. Another leap could well see them push for a top 6 place. Who knows?

Kirkby Colliery Welfare
Conductor: S. Berrill

Last Year: 15th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 15th
2001: 22nd
2000: DNC

Another band that has made rapid improvement in their two years of contesting here. 22nd in 2001 was replaced with 15th last year – not ground breaking, but still a good solid step in the right direction. More of the same please.

Long Eaton Silver Prize
Conductor: S. Stansfield

Last Year: 3rd
Last Seven Years:
2002: 3rd
2001: 13th
2000: 17th
1999: 23rd
1998: 16th
1997: 17th

After five years of making up the numbers, Long Eaton finally made the breakthrough last year and came 3rd. Given that their best result before then was 13th, that was some achievement and they will be looking to show that it wasn’t a one off. They could well be up there again come results time.

Conductor: M. Phillips

Last Year: 5th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 5th
2001: 8th 3rd Section (rel)
2000: 12th 3rd Section
1999: 16th 3rd Section
1998: 7th 3rd Section
1997: 2nd 4th Section (prom)

The last time the band were in the 4th Section they were runners up in 1997, but since then they had an extended stay in the 3rd Section without ever quite hitting the mark. A return back last year saw them mount a serious challenge and we think they could well do the same again. A qualification spot maybe?

Phoenix West Midlands Brass
Conductor: D. Bishop Rowe

Last Year: 4th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 4th
2001: DNC
2000: DNC

4th place on their first outing was an excellent achievement, and with a new MD at the helm they will be keen for a repeat this year. Apart from that there isn’t much more we can add.

Rolls Royce (Derby)
Conductor: N. Eden

Last Year: 9th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 9th
2001: 14th
2000: 7th
1999: 25th
1998: 9th
1997: 8th

A bit of an up and down existence here in the past six years, Rolls Royce came as low as 25th in 1999, but recovered to come 7th in 2000 and then 9th last year. They will be hoping the horrors are behind them then and that another step up the prize list is in order.

Rushden Windmill
Conductor: R. Graves

Last Year: 19th 3rd Section (rel)
Last Seven Years:
2002: 19th 3rd Section (rel)
2001: 12th 3rd Section
2000: 3rd 3rd Section
1999: 15th 3rd Section
1998: 3rd 3rd Section
1997: 6th 3rd Section

Rushden return back to the 4th Section for the first time since 1995, and they will be hoping that it will be something of a short stay here. They had a couple of real good years in the 3rd Section in 1998 and 2000, but fell away in the last few years and were relegated after coming 19th last time out. The fight back starts here.

Skegness Silver
Conductor: S. Walker

Last Year: 17th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 17th
2001: 24th
2000: DNC
1999: 22nd
1998: DNC
1997: DNC

Skegness will be making their 4th appearance here this year and they will be hoping that they can make another jump up the table after coming 17th last year. That was a jump of 7 places from 2001, so that’s what they will surely be hoping for this time.

Swineshead Silver
Conductor: D. J. Stephens

Last Year: 18th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 18th
2001: 19th
2000: 24th
1999: 24th
1998: DNC

Another band that has been making steady progress in the right direction over the past few years. 24th in 1999 and 2000 was a steady start, but they have since bettered themselves in each of their last two outings. 18th place last year – something a bit higher this time would be just what they are looking for.

Conductor: K. Short

Last Year: 18th 3rd Section (rel)
Last Seven Years:
2002: 18th 3rd Section (rel)
2001: 15th 3rd Section
2000: 10th 3rd Section
1999: 8th 3rd Section
1998: 9th 3rd Section
1997: DNC

Matlock return back to the 4th Section after five years in the 3rd Section when they found it hard work making a mark. 9th place in 1998 wasn’t a bad start but after that they fell away and were relegated after coming 18th last year. They will be hoping to show that they can more than hold their own here and mount a challenge.

Conductor: B. Thompson

Last Year: 10th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 10th
2001: 18th
2000: DNC
1999: 14th
1998: 14th 3rd Section (rel)
1997: 17th 3rd Section

Tideswell were relegated to the 4th Section in 1999 and since then (with the exception of 2000 when they didn’t compete) they have improved on their two outings here. 18th in 2001 and then 10th last year could be the sign that they are ready to mount a serious challenge for a top six placing.

Wellington (Telford) Brass
Conductor: S. Curtis

Last Year: 8th
Last Seven Years:
2002: 8th
2001: 11th
2000: DNC
1999: DNC

Wellington make their third appearance here this year and they seem to be moving in the right direction if the results are anything to go by. 11th in 2001 and then 8th last year show they are moving in the right direction. More of the same will keep them happy this time around.

Past Winners:

2002: WEM Jubilee
2001: Carlton Brass
2000: Raunds Temperance
1999: Audley Brass
1998: University of Warwick
1997: Porthywaen
1996: Alcester Victoria
1995: Kirkby Victoria
1994: Banovallum Brass

Winning Conductors:

2002: R. Thorne
2001: T. Wilson
2000: J. Fletcher
1999: K. Birch
1998: C. MacDonald
1997: D. Thomas
1996: E. Rees
1995: A. Dennis
1994: E. White

Test Pieces:

2002: Suite in B Flat – G. Jacobs
2001: Sinfonietta Pastorale – H. Geehl
2000: The Haslemere Suite – P. Graham
1999: Indian Summer – E. Ball
1998: Solemn Melody – Walford – Davies and Scenes from a Comedy - Hopkinson
1997: Pennine Moors – D. Barry
1996: Mexican Fiesta – R. Hanmer
1995: Little Suite for Brass No1 – M. Arnold
1994: The Journeyman – R. Steadman - Allen
1993: Impromptu
1992: The Seafarers


2002: S. Sykes
2001: R. Roe
2000: D. Horsfield
1999: A. Morrrison
1998: B. Thompson
1997: C. Hardy
1996: D. Wilby
1995: B. Thompson
1994: R. Roe

Past Qualifiers:

2002: WEM Jubilee, Leicester Cooperative, Long Eaton
2001: Carlton Brass, Shirland Miners Training, West Mercia Constabulary
2000: Raunds Temperance, Malvern Hills
1999: Audley Brass, Malvern Hills, Raunds Temperance
1998: University of Warwick, Porthywaen
1997: Porthywaen, Newham
1996: Alcester Victoria, Chapel en le Frith
1995: Kirkby Colliery, Rushden Windmill, Chael en le Frith
1994: Banovallum Brass, Kirkby Colliery

Midlands bands at the Finals:

2002: 6th, 9th, 18th
2001: 1st, 5th, 6th
2000: 3rd, 6th
1999: 11th, 16th, 19th
1998: 4th, 9th

Last Years Result:

1. WEM Jubilee – R. Thorne 185pts
2. Leicester Co-op Snibston – G. Jacklin 184pts
3. Long Eaton Silver – S. Stansfield 182pts
4. Phoenix West Midlands – M. Williams 181pts
5. Newhall Band – M. Phillips 180pts
6. Bakewell Silver – M. Wilcockson 179pts
7. Banovallum Brass – E. White 178pts
8. Wellington Brass – S. Curtis 177pts
9. Rolls Royce (Derby) – N. Eden 176pts
10. Tideswell – B. Thomson 175pts
11. Enderby Youth – S. Osgood 174pts
12. Hathern B – G. Wood 173pts
13. Dunchurch Silver – G. Smallwood 172pts
14. Corby Silver – A. Manley 171pts
15. Kirkby Colliery Welfare – S. Berrill 170pts
16. Black Country Brass – A. Manley 169pts
17. Skegness Silver – S. Walker 168pts
18. Swineshead Silver – D. Stephens 167pts

4BR Prediction:

Difficult to predict – 4BR has been left with more egg on their face than Edwina Currie could ever manage when it comes to looking in our crystal ball and we happily admit that we don’t really fancy our chances of getting all top six in the right order. One or two will do. Sorry if that sounds as if we are chickening out, but we are!

Looking at the form though this is what we opted for. Apologies for the bands we are putting the kiss of death on but we hope you can prove our inspired choices right. The rest can take heart that if they come in the prize list they can put two good old fingers up at us and have a laugh at out lack of knowledge!

1. Long Eaton Prize
2. Bakewell Silver
3. Phoenix West Midlands Brass
4. Dronfield
5. Enderby Youth
6. Newhall

Dark Horses: Rolls Royce (Derby)

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