2008 North of England Regional Championship - Runners & Riders: Second Section


10 well matched bands will try to be their inventive best to overcome the stylistic difficulties of Kenneth Downie's delicate work in what could be the best contest of the weekend.

Sunday 30th March
Adjudicator: Peter Roberts

Test Piece: Three Part Invention – Kenneth Downie
Commences: 10.00am

BarrowBarrow Shipyard

Last 12 Years:
2007: DNC (rel)
2006: 9th in Championship Section (J. Durrant) (rel)
2005: DNC
2004: 2nd in First Section (J. Durrant) (prom)
2003: 2nd (J. Durrant)
2002: 4th  (D. Broadbent)
2001: 8th (B. Maginn)
2000: 7th in Championship (B. Maginn) (rel)
1999: 10th
1998: 6th
1997: 2nd in First Section (prom)
1996: 3rd

Nice to see Barrow Shipyard return to the contest stage this year after missing out twelve months ago.

We don’t as yet know who is taking the band, but we hope this will be the first of many more performances here. No real form to go on either so it will be a question of wait and see.  

BartonBarton Town
Richard Evans

Last 12 Years:
2007: Winners of Third Section (M. Bentham) (prom)
2006: Winners in Fourth Section (M. Bentham) (prom)

Without doubt the favourites if they continue to play to the inspired form they have shown in the past two years.

Last year they won the Third Section in considerable style under Mark Bentham and went on to Harrogate under Richard Evans where they were perhaps unlucky not to have won the national title. They sounded a very good in the making there and with Tricky Dicky once more at the helm they will be confident of a return trip we are sure.  

Cockerton Prize Silver
G. Nicklin

Last 12 Years:
2007: 2nd (G. Nicklin)
2006: 3rd (G. Nicklin)
2005: 5th (G. Catherall)
2004: 7th (A. Taylor)
2003: 7th (G. Catherall)
2002: 2nd (G. Catherall)
2001: 6th (C. Lawn)
2000: 6th (C. Lawn)
1999: N/K
1998: 8th in First Section (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: 2nd

Cockerton will be another band who will be confident of making the return trip to Harrogate after coming runner up last year.

At the finals they played well but didn’t quite get the reward they were hoping for in coming 16th, but their record here in the last few years seems to confirm that they are a band very much on the up.  They came 2nd at the Durham Contest late last year, so recent form is pretty good. 

G. Williams 

Last 12 Years:
2007: 6th (M. Condron)
2006: 4th in Third Section (M. Condron) (prom)
2005: Winners of Third Section (M. Condron)
2004: 7th (M. Condron)
2003: 8th (M. Condron)
2002: 7th (J. Ireland)
2001: 3rd in Fourth Section (J. Ireland) (prom)
2000: 4th (S. Tighe)
1999: N/K
1998: 2nd
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Sadly there will be no Mark Condron to conduct Dearham this year but we are sure the band will want to produce a performance he would have been proud of.

They held their own last year in coming 6th and they came 4th at the Brass at the Guild Hall contest too, so a podium place or better may be within their sights if they hit top form. 

Durham ConstabularyDurham Constabulary
K. MacDonald 

Last 12 Years:
2007: 4th (K. MacDonald)
2006: Winners of Third Section (K. MacDonald) (prom)
2005: 3rd in Fourth Section (K. MacDonald) (prom)
2004: 2nd (K. MacDonald)
2003: 8th (K. MacDonald)
2002: 14th in Third Section (P. Cuff) (rel)
2001: DNC
2000: 10th in Third Section (P. Gommersall)
1999: N/K
1998: 4th
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

The lads and lasses from Durham Constabulary are moving nicely in the right direction it seems in the last few years and twelve months ago they put in a good solid show to come 4th.

More of that or better could well see them asking the chief constable for some leave in September.  

Ferryhill Town
S. Norris

Last 12 Years:
2007: 7th (S. Norris)
2006: DNC
2005: 4th in Third Section (S. Norris) (prom)
2004: 3rd (T. Maddison)
2003: 9th in Second Section (T. Maddison) (rel)
2002: 9th (S. Robson)
2001: Winners of Third Section (S. Robson) (prom)
2000: Winners of Fourth Section (S. Robson) (prom)
1999: 4th
1998: 11th in Third Section (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: 3rd

Ferryhill returned last year after a year away from the contesting arena to come 7th, and they will be hoping to improve on that this time if they are to fend off any possibility of relegation.

They came runner up at the Durham contest in the C Section late last year so they have something to build on. 

Hetton Silver
A. Seymour 

Last 12 Years:
2007: DNC (rel)
2006: 3rd
2005: 2nd (K. Wheatley)
2004: DNC
2003: 7th (K. Wheatley)
2002: Winners of Fourth Section (K. Wheatley) (prom)
2001: DNC
2000: 6th (K. Wheatley) (rel)
1999: N/K
1998: 11th in Second Section (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Hetton didn’t make it to the starting line last year, so it’s a welcome return this year for the band.

They had been on pretty good form at the contest before their departure and although they came 4th at the Durham County contest late last year they should be confident of at least holding their own this time around.  

Houghton Brass
Mark Bousie

Last 12 Years:
2007: 8th in First Section (T. Gibson) (rel)
2006: 6th (T. Gibson)
2005: 11th (T. Gibson)
2004: 3rd in Second Section (T. Gibson) (prom)
2003: 2nd (T. Gibson)
2002: Winners of Third Section (T. Gibson) (prom)
2001: 4th (T. Gibson)
2000: 5th (T. Gibson)
1999: N/K
1998: 10th in Second Section (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: N/K

Houghton fell through the relegation trap door last year and return to the Second Section for the first time since 2004.

Although they never set the First Section alight they just about held their own, so the drop may not be too much of a bad thing. They also came 3rd at the Durham contest in the B Section late last year, so they have something to build their form on from there.  Mark Bousie, the euphonium star who is the driving force behind Sellers International Youth Band makes his conducting debut at a higher level with the band.

MurtonMurton Colliery
Dennis Noble

Last 12 Years:
2007: 3rd (D. Noble)
2006: 5th (D. Noble)
2005: 3rd in Third Section (D. Noble) (prom)
2004: 4th (D. Noble)
2003: 4th (J. Cook)
2002: 4th (P. Rosier)
2001: 8th (K. MacDonald)
2000: 8th (K. MacDonald)
1999: 4th
1998: 8th
1997: Winners of Fourth Section (prom)
1996: 3rd

Murton is another band that has been making solid progress in the last few years and twelve months ago just missed out on a trip to the finals when they came 3rd.

More of that form should set them up nicely although they will want to pick up from coming 5th at the Durham contest in the B Section late last year.      

yORKYork Railway Institute
D. Warley

Last 12 Years:
2007: 5th (D. Warley)
2006: 7th in First Section (D. Warley) (rel)
2005: 9th (D. Warley)
2004: 6th (D. Warley)
2003: 6th in Second Section (D. Warley) (prom)
2002: 3rd (D. Warley)
2001: 2nd (D. Warley)
2000: 9th (D. Beal)
1999: DNC
1998: 9th in First Section (rel)
1997: N/K
1996: 4th

The Railway lads and lasses will be looking to book their ticket to Harrogate this year after they made a solid enough return to the Second Section last year in coming 5th.

9th place at the Wilkinson’s contest may not have been the best result but it gives them something to build on for their appearance here we are sure.  

Past Qualifiers:

2007: Wansbeck’s Ashington, Cockerton Silver
2006: Lockwood Brass, Wansbeck's Ashington
2005: Lockwood Brass, GT Group Peterlee
2004: Ellington Colliery, Felling
2003: Langbaurgh Brass, Houghton Brass
2002: Langbaurgh Brass, Cockerton Silver
2001: Westoe (STHCT), York Railway Institute
2000: Harrogate, GT Group Peterlee
1999: Yarm and District, GT Group Peterlee
1998: Rowntree Band, Greggs Bakery
1997: Cottingham, Greggs Bakery
1996: Carlisle St. Stephens, Cockerton Silver
1995: Broughton's Brass, Flookburgh  

North of England bands at the Finals:

2007: 8th, 16th
2006: 10th, 11th
2005: 7th, 8th
2004: 8th, 9th
2003: 4th, 6th
2002: 5th, 12th
2001: 11th, 17th
2000: 11th, 15th
1999: 4th, 6th
1998: 3rd, 14th   

4BR Prediction: 

This could well be the most keenly fought contest of the whole weekend – and perhaps the most enjoyable too as a result. There are a number of bands that could well have enough about them to book a qualification place and the tussle for the top prize may be a close run thing.

Of the bands, we think that Barton, if they play to top form, could well be celebrating a victory, although we think they could be hard pushed by the likes of Cockerton, Murton and Houghton, not forgetting Durham Constabulary and York Railway. Our dark horses are Dearham   

1. Barton Town
2. Murton
3. Houghton
4. Cockerton
5. Durham Constabulary
6. York Railway

Dark Horse: Dearham


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