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2019 Whit Friday
The times they are a changin'

Malcolm Wood looks forward to what could be the start of a new era in the long history of the famous Whit Friday contests...

Dylan
The Whit Friday times they are a changing...

If any band is looking to play a march arrangement of Bob Dylan's, 'For the times they are a changin', at this year’s Whit Friday contests, then they may be onto something.

Heritage and tradition remain key components to the successful hosting of the various contests across Tameside and Saddleworth, but so too are years of dedication and commitment - especially from those who for the other 364 days of the year have a very limited involvement in the banding world.   

Change has been coming though, and the implementation of protective guidelines has ensured that will now be a different hinterland to the contest day, whilst financial pressures on local authorities as well as local businesses has meant that the hard working contest organisers have been pushed even harder this year to balance their books.       

A new Whit Friday era is with us.

Vital

What the full extent of the implementation of BOPA guidelines will have remains to be seen, but there is no doubt that it has been necessary and vital that they have been implemented.

The various Councils and their hard working officials involved in the matter have been proactive and helpful - something that has been noted in various Whit Friday contest meetings.  However, it was also notable that there was a great deal of angst and sometimes anger at what was seen as needless and rather pointed interference by others who have offered little support or information to the events in the past.

The various Councils and their hard working officials involved in the matter have been proactive and helpful - something that has been noted in various Whit Friday contest meetings.

In addition, the financial constraints could well signal further changes in coming years. The generous central funding from Oldham & Tameside Councils is not ring-fenced. Some contests are very much on a financial, let alone, as some organisers see, a bureaucratic knife edge.

Changes too in different areas.

Sadly, the past twelve months has seen the passing of two prominent adjudicators and the Chairman of the Friends of Tameside Whit Friday Contests, which will mean considerable sadness that familiar faces will not be seen again.

White
Tradition remains from the past...

Lovely touch

In a lovely touch, the memory of Tameside Chairman, Brian Hill (who set up the Tame Valley contest) will be remembered in the years to come with the presentation of a memorial trophy in his name for the ‘Highest Placed Local Band’.

Meanwhile, the popular Mossley contest has changed venues (to save costs) whilst bands may well find an extra amount of paperwork may have to be completed in both Saddleworth & Tameside before a note is blown in competitive anger.  

Patience and understanding will be needed at times, but bands are used to that at Whit Friday.  

Patience will also be needed on the roads, especially in Stalybridge, where a temporary closure will be in place on the B6175 Huddersfield Road towards Stalybridge from 7.15pm. This is due to the popular running of the Tour of Tameside – another event that now has a fair amount of tradition behind it.

Challengers and visitors

As for the bands - the likes of Brighouse & Rastrick, Fairey, Foden’s and Hammonds will put aside preparations for the forthcoming ‘Band of the Year’ contest in Manchester in the hope of boosting funds.  

All bands should note though that there have been adjustments to the cut-off times for registration in some venues – so late night dashes or the odd bit of queue jumping may be in vain.

Brighouse will be looking to make it a hat-trick of Saddleworth overall championship victories, whilst Foden’s will be aiming for an incredible 18 out of 19 in Tameside.  Both though will be chased and chased hard by bands wishing to add a chorus of Dylanesque; ‘The order is rapidly fadin'. And the first one now. Will later be last’. 

All bands should note though that there have been adjustments to the cut-off times for registration in some venues – so late night dashes or the odd bit of queue jumping may be in vain.

Watch out for the likes of Hepworth, Leyland, Marsden, Oldham (Lees) and Rothwell Temperance amongst the possible contenders for the big money prizes.

WHIT fRIDAY
Welcome visitors despite the rain

Far and wide

Great to see bands from far and wide too - with a welcome return for Bodmin (in concert the following day at Boarshurst at 3.00pm) and Aldbourne, whilst spectators will surely enjoy a host of ‘traditional’ and certainly ‘non-traditional’ scratch bands who will be out on the night raising monies for charities.

Putney & Wimbledon Band is one ensemble making the trip north on a mini tour featuring a brand new march written for them by Derek Broadbent.

A slightly longer trip has been undertaken by Weston Silver from Toronto, whilst Lund University Brass comes from the other direction from Sweden. There is sure to be great interest and delight to welcome Brassband Reykjavíkur, the only brass band from Iceland. 

The Scouthead contest has a special prize for the highest placed overseas band, so keep an eye out there for our welcome international visitors. All of these bands are also in concert before and after Whit Friday at various venues. Give promoter Phil Beck a call for details, 07976165815

Numerous contests have embraced the world of social media and twitter. Bands in Tameside can use #WhitBrass19 to keep up with news and showcase their progress in addition to the Council twitter account @tmbc_culture

As for the weather? Hopefully it behaves, but doubtful it will be the warmest of years. 

Different
There is always something different to enjoy...

Results

4BR will aim to publish the results as soon as possible, including the identity of the overall champions in Saddleworth.

In Tameside, whilst the bands will have worked out their placings and winnings, the official announcement will come after the weekend.

One final note though to band representatives eager to find out where they have come. Please be patient.

It's not the end of the world if you have to wait to get your result, so do not pester the local organisers in the early hours of the morning to find out if you have won an extra £50.

It's not the end of the world if you have to wait to get your result, so do not pester the local organisers in the early hours of the morning to find out if you have won an extra £50.

The number of complaints has risen in recent years from exhausted volunteers and hosts about ill-mannered band reps who demand to know where they have come - so have a bit of respect for their efforts. 

4BR will try its best to get all the results through official channels – so just log into us throughout Saturday and Sunday and all will eventually be revealed.

Malcolm Wood


Saddleworth & Oldham District:

Area Open Champions: £2,500, 2nd: £1,000, 3rd: £750 
Youth: £250
Local Area Champion: £750, 2nd: £600, 3rd: £400
The Saddleworth & Oldham Contests are supported by Oldham Council and Saddleworth & Lees District Partnership

Delph:
http://www.delph-whit-friday.co.uk
Contest: 4.00pm-10.30pm
Main Prize: £1,000 from a total prize fund of £4,000
Adjudicator: Mike Kilroy
Contact: Mr R. Rodgers (01457 874354)
twitter: @delphcontest

Denshaw:
http://www.denshawcontest.co.uk/
Contest: 4.00pm 10.30pm
Main Prize: £1,000 from a total prize fund of £3,690
Adjudicator: Allan Holdsworth
Contact: Andrina Baxter (07920763979)
twitter: @denshawcontest

Diggle:
http://www.digglebandcontest.co.uk
Contest: 4.00pm 10.30pm
Main Prize: £800 from a total prize fund of £3,215
Adjudicator: Tabby Kerwin
Contact: B. Cliffe (07703184200)
twitter: @DiggleContest

Dobcross:
Contest: 4.00pm 10.00pm
Main Prize: £750 from a total prize fund of £2,995
Adjudicator: Brian Rostron
Contact: Gavin Roberts (07877015169)
twitter: @DobcrossWhitFri

Friezland:
3rd, 4th & Youth Sections only
Contest: 4.30pm 10.30pm
Main Prize: £200 from a total prize fund of £575
Adjudicator: T. Newbigging
Contact: J. Barrett (01457 870612)

Greenfield:
Registration from: 3.30pm
Contest: 4.00pm 10.00pm
Main Prize: £1,000 from a total prize fund of £4,350
Adjudicator: Chris Wormald
Contact: Frank Rothwell (07802938270)

Grotton:
Contest: 4.00pm 10.00pm
Main Prize: £700 from a total prize fund of £2,465
Adjudicator: Nicholas Garmon
Contact: Graham Talboys-Smith (07761 593342)
twitter: @WhitBrass

Lydgate:
Contest: 4.00pm -10.30pm
Main Prize: £850 from a total prize fund of £3,210
Adjudicator: Sam Fisher
Contact: Gordon Beverley (07932 747590)

Lees & Springhead:
Contest: 4.30pm 10.00pm
Main Prize: £500 from a total prize fund of £1,755
Adjudicator: Alan Fernie
Contact: Val Sedgewick ( 07732516333)

Scouthead & Austerlands:
Contest: 4.15pm -11.00pm
Main Prize: £800 from a total prize fund of £3,780
Adjudicator: Jonathan Pippen
Contact: D. Needham (0161 6520341)
Bands waiting on the night number: (07880 743876)

Uppermill:
Contest: 4.00pm 10.30pm
Main Prize: £1,000 from a total prize fund of £2,660
Adjudicator: David Marshall
Contact: Pam Byrne (01457 820149)
twitter: @BandContest

Further details for the Saddleworth Contests are available at the following link: http://www.saddleworthwhitfriday.co.uk


Tameside:

Tameside Area Open Champions: £2,000, 2nd: £1,000, 3rd: £750,
Overall First Section: £500,
Overall Second Section: £400
Overall Third Section: £350,
Overall Fourth Section: £300
Youth: £200, 2nd £100.
Local Area Champion: £750, 2nd: £600, 3rd: £400
The Tameside contests are supported by Tameside Council and the Friends of Tameside Whit Friday Brass Band Contest Committee.

Broadoak:
Contest: 4.30pm -11.00pm
Main Prize: £500 from a total prize fund of £1,600
Ashton Rugby Club
Adjudicator: Duncan Beckley
Contact: Graham Hall (0161 339 8341)

Carrbrook:
Contest: 4.00pm -11.00pm
Main Prize: £600 from a total prize fund of £1,555
Carr Rise
Adjudicator: John Davies
Contact: Kathryn Heyes (07760 274 629)
twitter: @CarrbrookWhitFr

Denton:
Contest: 4.15pm -11.45pm
Main Prize: £250 from a total prize fund of £1,260
Adjudicator: Mike Lyons
Contact: Mrs Joan Emery (0161 2925319/07939 383147)
twitter: @DBBAwhitfriday

Droylsden:
Contest: 4.00pm 11.15pm
Main Prize: £400 from a total prize fund of £1,050
The Bush Inn
Adjudicator: Dave Lea
Contact: Sheila Bowater (07886361242)

Dukinfield (Tame Valley):
Contest: 4.30pm -12 midnight
Main Prize: £400 from a total prize fund of £1,600
Tame Valley Hotel
Adjudicator: Benjamin Richteon
Contact: Sharon McDonald (0161 339 0072)

Dukinfield (Albion Hotel):
Contest: 4.00pm -11.00pm
Main Prize: £350 from a total prize fund of £1,675
Albion Hotel
Adjudicator: Nigel Lawless
Contact: Adam Pickles (07825 254177/0161 330 3488)

Heyrod:
http://www.heyrodbandcontest.com
Contest: 4.30pm -11.000pm
Main Prize: £600 from a total prize fund of £2080
John Street
Adjudicator: Martin Heartfield
Contact: Colette Shaw (07983 335733)

Hurst Village:
Contest: 4.30pm -10.30pm
Main Prize: £300 from a total prize fund of £1,275
Ashton United FC
Adjudicator: Richie Howard
Contact: Cat Tomlinson (07500830583)

Stalybridge Labour Club:
Contest: 4.30pm -10.30pm
Main Prize: £400 from a total prize fund of £1,375
Stalybridge Labour Club
Adjudicator: Paul Norley
Contact: Leanne Feeley ( 07815 886 763)

Stalybridge Celtic:
Contest: 4.30pm -11.00pm
Main Prize: £400 from a total prize fund of £1,525
Stalybridge Celtic FC
Adjudicator: C. Evans
Contact: Gordon Greenwood (07770 433336)

Mossley:
Contest: 4.30pm -10.30pm (and will finish at midnight)
Main Prize: £750 from a total prize fund of £2,230
Mossley FC
Adjudicator: Gary Hallas
Contact: Jenny Harrison (07876214425)


Find the venue:

To enable bands to plan their routes and find the contest venues, visit the following link:
http://www.tameside.gov.uk/brassband/whitfriday/

Further details for the Tameside Contests are available from: http://www.tamesidebrassbands.org

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