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2012 Midlands Regional Championship — Postcard from Bedworth

Chris Thomas looks back on an intriguing Midlands Area contest in Bedworth.

Civic HallIt seems hard to believe that it is now five years since the Midlands Regional Championship was relocated from the woefully inadequate facilities on offer at Burton on Trent Town Hall, but there is no longer any doubt that Bedworth has come to feel like the contest’s natural home.

It’s fair to say that the excellent Civic Hall might not bear the architectural stamp of Sir Norman Foster or Edwin Lutyens, but when it comes to acoustics it’s as natural and revealing as any around the country; and that’s what matters to the bands in the top three sections that converged here.

Precision

Run with meticulous precision by Lesley Bentley and her team (with wonderful hospitality at both venues), the speed of change between bands was nothing short of remarkable (and definitely not for those who would normally bank on dashing out for a pee), whilst down the road at the Nicholas Chamberlain Community College where the Third and Fourth Sections took place, there were scores of even happier bandsmen and women to be seen.

Ironing out

That may or may not change though depending on the ‘ironing out’ process that could well see five sections of roughly equal numbers. 

81 bands (up six this year) could see 16 contenders in a future top section, although it would be more realistic that given the existing imbalances, that there will be 18 in each of the First, Second, Third and Fourth, with the remainder competing at the top level.

It may appear a blunt answer to a complex problem, but it seems to be the only one that would work, and work quickly, if the area can continue to manage competitiveness as well as expectations.

Enjoy


It’s easy to jibe, even in jest that the quality of the bands in the Midlands doesn’t compare with Yorkshire or the North West but that’s exactly what the Final is there to sort out.

All that matters at the ‘Regional’ is that there is an exciting, closely fought contest for both players and audience to enjoy; and that’s what we get in the Midlands year after year. 2012 proved to be no exception.

If you require any further confirmation just have a word with Messrs Read and Broadbent who took the best part of 20 minutes to sort out who made it to the Albert Hall with Desford Colliery.

The centre of the cultural universe Bedworth most certainly isn’t, but judging by the legions of happy bands around the two venues at the weekend, there won’t be too many people worrying about that.  

Chris Thomas



Drighlington Band -

Saturday 21 September • Drighlington Methodist Church BD11 1EL


Haverhill Silver Band - Last Night of the Proms

Saturday 21 September • Haverhill Arts Centre. High Street. Haverhill CB9 8AR


Black Dyke Band - Swiss Open Gala Concert

Saturday 21 September • Europaplatz 1, 6005 Luzern, Switzerland 6005


Enderby Youth Band - Mike Fowles, directing a Youth training weekend

Saturday 21 September • Lutterworth College. Bitteswell Road . Lutterworth LE17 4EW


The GUS Band - Last Night of the Proms

Saturday 21 September • Holy Trinity Church, . Squires Hill, . Rothwell, . Northamptonshire NN14 6BQ


Epsom and Ewell Silver Band

September 18 • We're looking to fill vacancies for Front Row Cornet, Tenor Horn and Bb Bass. And we are always on the lookout for competent Percussionists. But we are always happy to see new players on any instrument. Come down and see us for a blow.


Chinnor Silver

September 18 • following some very exciting signings on Bb Bass and solo cornet we require a FLUGEL PLAYER to complete our new look ahead of the new contest season.Good book of concerts and contests planned but we keep a realistic approach to modern banding.


Garforth Brass

September 18 • Due to retirement we will have a vacancy for a EUPHONIUM player, position negotiable, towards the end of the year. If you want only one rehearsal a week, GARFORTH is the place for you! Sunday evenings from 6.15 till 7.45pm at Garforth Methodist Church.


Rob Nesbitt

BSc, PG Cert. Ed.
Cartoonist , illustrator, writer


               

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