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2020 Regional Championships
Yorkshire - As it happened

All the action from the 2020 Yorkshire Regional Championships — as it happened.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 21:27:46

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    2020 Champion: Black Dyke

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    Second Place: Carlton Main Frickley

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    Third Place: Hepworth

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    Best Principal Cornet: Richard Marshall

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    Best Soloist: Toni Howden: Carlton Main Frickley

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    Youngest Player: Rhys Stokes of Strata Brass

    Results:

    Championship Section:

    Test Piece: A Tale as Yet Untold (Philip Sparke)
    Adjudicators: Nigel Boddice MBE and Garry Cutt

    1. Black Dyke (Prof Nicholas Childs)*
    2. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Allan Withington)**
    3. Hepworth (Ryan Watkins)**
    4. Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof David King)*
    5. Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks)
    6. City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey)
    7. Hatfield & Askern Colliery (Stanley Lippeatt)
    8. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)
    9. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)
    10. Hammonds (Morgan Griffiths)
    11. Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr. David Thornton)
    12. Strata (Jonathan Bates)
    13. Crofton Silver (Dean Jones)
    14. Drighlington (Neil Robinson)

    Withdrawn: Old Silkstone

    *Black Dyke and Brighouse & Rastrick pre-qualified for the National Final

    **Qualify for the National Final

    Best Principal Cornet: Richard Marshall (Black Dyke)
    Best Soloist: Toni Howden (Euphonium) — Carlton Main Frickley
    Best Instrumentalist: Scott Bennett (Horn) — Hatfield & Askern Colliery
    Youngest Player: Rhys Stokes (Strata Brass) aged 11

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 20:53:31

    4BR Round up and Prediction.

    A bit of a musical marathon this afternoon and this evening — but the best were right out of the top drawer in anyone's book.

    It's between Brighouse & Rastrick and Black Dyke for the ultimate honour with the likes of Hammonds, Grimethorpe and Carlton Main battling for those two extra places for the Albert Hall. Hepworth and Rothwell may get a mention but the main battle seems between the oldest of rivals.

    1. Brighouse & Rastrick
    2. Black Dyke
    3. Hammonds
    4. Grimethorpe
    5. Carlton Main
    6. Hepworth

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 20:47:27

    Championship Section:

    14. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Allan Withington)

    A wonderfully lucid, elegant performance — shaped and moulded with a hint of emotive melancholy from the MD — a tempered sadness that permeated all three movements.

    There was a dark, bubbling pulse to the opening — a rich backdrop that allowed the detail to come though without forcefulness. Finely judged dynamics also gave the music a defined spectrum of texture — not many had managed that today by any means.

    Such an engrossing approach to the central section — yearning with that cold, almost Nordic sadness — slowly unfolding like melting ice before your eyes. There were little moments of unease in the solo lines for sure, but they didn't tarnish things — the pace gently flowing, glacial almost to the tender chorale and soft repose.

    A little untidy in places in the finale, but the dynamic range is so impressive — and that pulse is never ending. Just the odd bit of grit in the smoothness, but it still manages to retain that luscious feel even when the coking ovens are stoked up and the funnels blast the hot air out.

    The close has a joyful ferociousness.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 20:19:05

    Championship Section:

    13. Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks)

    And another performance that somehow forgot that excellent musical intentions count for little if a band simply tries to match the biggest bands with a Spinal Tap approach to volume. Why? This a fine cruiser weight sounding ensemble that doesn't need to bulk up its sound — the quality was lost.

    It was so frustrating to hear — the opening movement harsh, edgy and lacked dynamic variance and precision. It was a jumble of brittleness.

    Even more so, as the middle section was a quite lovely display of warmly glowing musicality — led by tender euph and with the MD having confidence in the players to shine. Not quite everything came off, but the links were shaped with nuance and the soloists displayed nerveless artistry. The chorale sent a chill to the bone marrow building to such a super climax and touching close.

    The pacy finale certainly had a driving pulse that underpinned things well — and when it was controlled is really had a sheen of vibrancy. Just wish they didn't lose their dynamic heads to close. Got harsh, but retained its form to give it the full monty to close.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 19:53:54

    Championship Section:

    12. Hepworth (Ryan Watkins)

    One of a host of those heavy duty dynamic weave approaches that eschewed a softer touch to the musical skin for something that simply covered broad shoulders.

    Again — what a pity, as the MDs approach had such an inherent musicality about it — one realised with the way the middle section was structured. The first though was non-descript — a lack of precision and dynamic variance — just levels of loudness. The detail was there but it had to work so hard to come through the miasma of volume.

    That central section was playing of a different level — so warm, balanced and shaped with a loving hand. The main solo cadenzas were controlled (super horn) but had a confident artistry — the flugel linking with such a lovely sense of musicianship. The chorale grew organically to its conclusion and rest.

    There was a neatness to the opening to the finale — one that almost held its nerve as it progressed. It started to sound frantic in places and lost it cohesion, whilst they just couldn't rid themselves of that default over zealous dynamic approach to close — it was very harsh.

    A nearly one for us that from a partnership that seems to have a fine understanding — but just needed to temper the dynamic enthusiasm. Could still sneak a mention though.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 19:26:22

    Championship Section:

    11. Strata (Jonathan Bates)

    A tempered approach to the dynamics certainly aided this rendition from a hard working band that responded splendidly to their MDs musical inclinations.

    The opening had a vibrant sheen and underlying pace, but it wasn't forced and harsh in tonality. The subtler dynamic shadings were not as obvious as the best today, but they were not obliterated by trying to play so loud. The precision had a gritty determination about it too.

    An engaging flow underpinned the central section; one enhanced by the conductor's confidence to let his players time to shine in their cadenzas (with fab horn the stand out amid some bold features) and by moving the music on in between. The chorale was luscious and the close so nicely done.

    What a pity the finale never quite sounded at ease even at a reduced pace — it was a little too scrappy to give it that brittle, waspish feel. It found its form though and there was plenty of gas in tank to drive the music with an energised excitement despite the ensemble sounded just getting a little harsh to close.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 19:00:04

    Championship Section:

    10. Black Dyke (Prof Nicholas Childs)

    A real juggernaut performance — but one that was streamlined like jumbo jet covered in Vaseline. It had such an authoritative presence — bold and imposing, but with so much suppleness and flair.

    The opening movement caught its groove and pulsated with energy, a cutting edge of sharpness and levels of dynamic balance that stood out likes the different colours on a liquorice allsort sweet.

    The middle section was a showcase of effectiveness — led by the euph who sang in bel canto manner. The baritone, horn and cornet were no shrinking violets either. The MD connected the cadenzas like a surgeon connecting arteries. The chorale was almost inaudible but still shimmering with a tender glow before the touching close.

    All guns blazing for the finale — but played with such clarity, drive and purpose — and again with such a wide dynamic spectrum. It never sounded anything but easy, fizzing along with such purpose and drive. The last chapter revealed all — glorious sounds, edged to perfection — the MDs jump perfectly timed to the last beat.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 18:35:11

    Championship Section:

    9. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)

    We've started to lose count of how many performances we have heard cut from the same dynamic cloth here.

    Perhaps there is a long forgotten Yorkshire mill still producing it by the yard for bands that think they need to blow a test-piece into submission.

    What a pity as once more the MDs musical approach was flowing and subtly shaped, but the dynamics were at times simply overblown and raucous. Why the need to find a default setting so high was beyond us, as in the central section they played with a rich, dark tenderness that was so engaging.

    That first movement lacked precision and detail — nothing more to add. If there was stuff going in we missed it. It was so frustrating to hear — especially as that central section was played with care and modulated balance. The cadenzas were bold but not overblown and the chorale was splendidly captured. It was lovely.

    Perhaps the adrenaline kicked in again in the finale — making it scrappy and dynamically incoherent. Youthful exuberance? Perhaps, but the cool detachment of the middle section was lost in the aggression. It was certainly exciting but it could have benefited so much more with a little less concentrated overload of volume.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 18:14:34

    Championship Section:

    8. Hatfield & Askern Colliery (Stanley Lippeatt)

    A bold, at times raw blooded account — but one that was played with over-whelming self confidence.

    The dynamic spectrum was huge — although more pointed towards to top rather than bottom end of things, whilst the precision was at times lost in the volume.

    Some balance issues detracted in the opening, but it had a pulsating flow and real energised feel. The volume though made the detail opaque.

    No shortage of confidence in the bravura soloists who all played splendidly in the central section — although they had to give a bit of welly in places as the accompaniment was on the healthy side far too often. MD kept the music flowing though and shaped the phrase endings so well — it just could have all had a few notches taken off the volume. Solo cornet was such a classy lead and was a focal point of excellency in each movement.

    That was shown at the opening of the finale — which was paced carefully. It grew in intensity and purpose as it went on, but lost its dynamic bearings somewhat to close.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 17:31:55

    Championship Section:

    7. Hammonds (Morgan Griffiths)

    Solid, unpretentious, quality playing from Hammonds — aided by a subtle, understated reading by the MD that retained a defined sense of musical malleability.

    Much to admire from the word go — nothing overstated, but backed with a rigour and tempered appreciation of dynamic in a spectrum that worked without obvious discomfort. Efficient rather than thrilling, but it was so confidently delivered.

    Some lovely moments throughout the second movement too — warmly hued in tone, dark but not pitch tar black. The tenderness never strayed into misplaced sentimentality either and each of the cadenzas was played with aplomb — with such a fine Bryn Terfel baritone.

    The chorale had a shimmer of beauty that led to a sublime close.

    Just occasionally lost focus and ensemble balance to close, but it was so well paced and shaped — before the funnels were cleared from well stoked tuba engines. It was cruise mode all the way to the end with just enough bite to give the final section a real edge of brilliance.

    A really enjoyable one that.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 17:04:17

    Championship Section:

    6. Crofton Silver (Dean Jones)

    One where the adrenaline just got the better of the controlled musical intentions here — a real pity as you could tell that a huge amount of groundwork had been put in by the MD and his players.

    The opening just ran away from itself, losing the precision that marked the impressive opening. It also took time to find balance in the ensemble and to define the different dynamic strata. When it gelled it came off with a touch of spirited elan.

    The considered approach to the middle movement was well thought out by the MD — the music flowing without hindrance or artifice, aided by confident solo lines — the horn the most splendid and noble. A slightly stuttering chorale was played at such a brave dynamic level, building to fine climax and repose.

    There was a quick whiff before the somewhat frantic finale — exciting if scrappy. Good to see the MD maintain the momentum (with the aid of his metronome close to his ear) without recourse to the whip and he was rewarded with some super playing that had energy and torque to spare all the way to the close.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 16:38:26

    Championship Section:

    5. Drighlington (Neil Robinson)

    The harshest of tests of top flight credentials — but one tackled with determination hewn from slabs of Yorkshire limestone.

    It was at the very limit and beyond the technical capabilities at times, but the careful, eminently intelligent approach of the MD ensured that the musical identity was never lost.

    The pacing of the opening section was considered — losing its pulse and intensity, but ensuring the weave of the different inner parts did not unravel. So too the approach to the central section — played with tenderness and balance, aided by solidly delivered cadenzas — a noble horn and back row cornet the pick. Nicely shaped and contained all the way to the lovely close too.

    The finale seemed more than a tad on the gentrified side — causing problems with precision and drive. Oddly it found more comfort at a higher tempo groove and the ensemble seemed more at ease pushing the momentum forward. Stamina waned and it got ragged in the final quarter, but there were just enough fumes in the tank to make a robust dash for the close.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 16:13:58

    Championship Section:

    4. Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr. David Thornton)

    A deliberately structured performance of contrasting stylistic persuasions this — a passionate core surrounded by a carapace of technical brilliance in the first and third movements.

    It was certainly played with intensity — that opening bubbling with anxiety, nervous energy and fission. The dynamics were safely netted though and there were moments when the precision lost the sharpness of its early edge.

    The middle movement was richly toned, syrupy dark in places but still with an oily viscosity that flowed along. The cadenzas were of the bravura type — cantabile in confident style and execution. The chorale that followed could been slightly more tender but it was played effectively as was the touching close.

    Showboat playing to close — all up a notch in tempo and dynamic but thrusting forward with such momentum and bold purpose. That dark tonality came across so well, sprinkled with little gems of detail. Just lost that precision edge at the very end — but it was certainly exciting.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 15:45:30

    Championship Section:

    3. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)

    A 'tale' written from the familiar chapters of the Rothwell story here at this contest over the years — detailed, committed, determined, passionate, robust and unyielding in its purpose inspired by the MD.

    On this occasion though it was pockmarked throughout by expensive errors — small, but noticeable. The opening section had a fine drive and muscularity, but at times there was a steroid-pop of over wrought excitement that tarnished things. A pity as that pulse had an iron frame of security.

    The central movement also found itself on the cusp — a fine dynamic line that was occasionally overstepped in solo and ensemble. Horn and cornet were stanchions of class and the following chorale was refined, but then it lost its tender focus.

    Never quite hung together in the final section and again the dynamics seemed to be calibrated too highly — it was harsh in its brittle brilliance.

    When it caught the groove though it sizzled with intensity and powerful voltage flow. The occasional spark not withstanding, it surged forward and with no slackening of its grip to a ferocious close.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 15:19:18

    Championship Section:

    2. City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey)

    A rather forceful, if eminently colourful, passionate and exciting rendition that wore its heart on its sleeve and more than a touch up its arm in places.

    The intensity was palpable — even in the opening movement with a raw edge and bubbling pulse. It may have lacked a little refinement, but it didn't half catch you by the throat.

    It was much the same with the central section — not really yearning with thoughtful melancholy, more raging against the dying light. That famous line from Dylan Thomas came to mind in places — 'Do not go gentle into that good night'. The cadenzas were played with splendid bravura but it perhaps required a tenderness to really have captured the emotive core.

    It was one heck of a romp to the close — powered by a nitro-gas boost in torque. Full beanz commitment and passionate excitement — it was visceral and frenetic but it was oh so bloody confident. Huge close was right on the limit. The crowd went bonkers.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 14:52:30

    Championship Section:

    1. Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof David King)

    A performance of tender appreciation, fragile melancholy and crisp iciness that was balanced a scalpel edged precision and waspish elegance inspired by the MD.

    The calibration of the dynamic levels and balances was so well defined in the opening movement, all built on a tick-tock pulse that never wavered.

    It was the central section that had the power to send a chill into the marrow though — flowing richly, darkly, sensually. Artistic cadenza work was backed by the subtle nuances of the links between them — all with a chorale that shimmered in a glow and a close that almost disappeared.

    The romp to close was that and more — but played with such detailed refinement and dynamic subtlety. It never overpowered the drive of the music though but had such a sense of lean muscularity.

    My word, the MD has pulled one right out the top drawer of his locker here. Such a musical treat to the senses.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 14:27:31

    Draw:

    Championship Section:

    Test Piece: A Tale as Yet Untold (Philip Sparke)
    Sunday 8th March
    Adjudicators: Nigel Boddice MBE and Garry Cutt
    Commences: 2.30pm

    1. Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof David King)
    2. City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey)
    3. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)
    4. Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr. David Thornton)
    5. Drighlington (Neil Robinson)
    6. Crofton Silver (Dean Jones)
    7. Hammonds (Morgan Griffiths)
    8. Hatfield & Askern Colliery (Stanley Lippeatt)
    9. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)
    10. Black Dyke (Prof Nicholas Childs)
    11. Strata (Jonathan Bates)
    12. Hepworth (Ryan Watkins)
    13. Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks)
    14. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Allan Withington)

    Old Silkstone (TBA) — Withdrawn

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 13:37:47

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    2020 Champion: Kippax

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    Second Place: Lofthouse 2000

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    Third Place: Emley

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    Best Percussion: Maltby Miners

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    Best Instrumentalist: Nigel Darbyshire of Kippax

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    Youngest Player: Rhiannon Catley aged 11 of Maltby Miners

    Result:

    Third Section:

    Sunday 8th March
    Test Piece: Endurance — narrative variations for brass band (Andrew Baker)
    Adjudicators: David Hirst and Sarah Groarke-Booth

    1. Kippax (Stephen Tighe)*
    2. Lofthouse 2000 (Andrew Whitaker)*
    3. Emley Brass (Garry Hallas)
    4. Maltby Miners Welfare (Terry Clifford)
    5. Dinnington Colliery (Jonathan Beatty)
    6. Gawthorpe Brass '85 (John Edward)
    7. Clifton & Lightcliffe (John Clay)
    8. Huddersfield & Ripponden (Adam Bell)
    9. Oughtibridge (Gavin Somerset)
    10. Deepcar Brass (Cathryn O'Shea)
    11. Armthorpe Elmfield (Raymond Kilcoyne)

    *Qualify for National Final

    Best Instrumentalist: Nigel Darbyshire (cornet) — Kippax
    Best Percussion: Maltby Miners
    Youngest Player: Rhiannon Catley aged 11 of Maltby Miners

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 12:47:52

    Best Yorkshire explorers find passage to Cheltenham

    Its been a very interesting and enjoyable morning here in Huddersfield — and plenty of plaudits for all 11 bands who battled to tame the challenges of Andrew Baker's super work.

    'Endurance' by name and fortitude, grit and determination in musical nature required to master it. None quite did that here — but it is a very stern test-piece for this level of banding. Plenty of fine efforts trying though — and the latest two were no exception from Gawthopre Brass '85' and Dinnington.

    Both were battling against the elements at times, but both came through thanks to the sensible approaches taken by the MDs and some fine solo contributions. Gawthorpe and Dinnington were a little uneven in execution but the musical intent was admirable. Special mention to the perc teams of both bands too — with the two ladies at Dinnington in particular absolute stars. We won't give away their ages — but they were brilliantly young at heart.

    As for a winner?

    It's Kippax for us from Lofthouse 2000 for the Cheltenham places with Emley and Clifton pushing for a podium.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 12:15:20

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    Garry Hallas is all smiles as usual

    Fond farewells...

    A bit like Shackleton leaving some of his crew to try and find a way back to land, this contest has also seen the end of fine musical partnerships and fond farewells from two conductors in Garry Hallas with Emley and Cathryn O'Shea with Deepcar.

    Both have inspired their bands in the last few years and leave them looking at exciting futures. Garry heads to a new tenure at Yorkshire Imps and left his mark with yet another sensibly constructed account with Emley. He knew just his players could and couldn't do and made the most his strengths — including a lovely flugel and trom. Not a bad way to bow out indeed.

    Just before them came an encouraging, if slightly uneven account from Huddersfield & Ripponden — again well led by an MD using his noggin in Adam Bell. Great to see the wide age range in this band — so the future looks bright.

    The last of the trio was Deepcar — with Cathryn O'Shea leading the band with clarity and determination once again. Some super moments too — from super solo horn and young lad on percussion in particular. Another well directed account from a conductor we hope isn't lost to the banding movement for long.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 11:11:49

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    An experienced Shackleton in the form of Stephen Tighe

    Icy challenges and a few crevices...

    Another trio of well directed bands here in Huddersfield showing real Shackleton fortitude in overcoming the tricky icy challenges, traps and crevices of Andrew Baker's test piece.

    No one has come a Robert Falcon Scott cropper as yet, but nobody has really planted their flag at the Cheltenham pole either. This a contest that is very much up for grabs.

    Some pretty good efforts though — with Lofthouse 2000 giving a marker of note with their big, broad sounds, neatly delivered solo lines and sense of bold adventure. Not everything came off but it had a real stamp of authority.

    It was followed by a flowing, well paced rendition from KIppax, with their MD Stephen Tighe using all his experience to circumnavigate around the more obvious pitfalls. Some lovely solo contributions — notably the solo cornet, and such a well defined sense of open sea horizons to close. Just a rocky landing in the last couple of bars, but it was good.

    Clifton & Lightciffe rounded things off also with a sense of adventure and imperial spirit. Just a few too many moments of unease perhaps, but a mature, well planned account that more than held its own.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 10:22:24

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    A relaxed Terry Clifford of Maltby Miners

    A Yorkshire endurance test...

    Andrew Baker's fine work is certainly a tough ask for any band at this level as we have already heard around the country.

    The complexities are transparent — but a bit like an Antarctic iceberg you can only readily see about 20% of them in the clear waters of the score. The minor keyed musicality — with its hints of Scriabin ambiguity and Vaughan Williams is wonderfully evocative writing — and takes some working out to get the balances right.

    We have had a trio of well led, gritty accounts so far — all from bands a bit short on crew to man the Endurance decks too — so bravo to them all. Tubas are in short supplies in these parts.

    Armthorpe Elmfield took to the stage with 19 brass and 3 percussionists but gave of their best — one what was their first Area contest appearance without the much missed Haydn Griffiths at the helm.

    Maltby followed (also a few players short) and with some fine solo lines adding to the cold colour palette, whilst Oughtibridge worked their way through the score with good sense and neat touches.

    It was a hard graft for all three — but they will be better bands for playing music that tested their technical as well as musical ambitions.

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 09:21:11

    Draw:

    Third Section:

    Sunday 8th March
    Test Piece: Endurance — narrative variations for brass band (Andrew Baker)
    Adjudicators: David Hirst and Sarah Groarke-Booth
    Commences: 9.30am

    1. Armthorpe Elmfield (Raymond Kilcoyne)
    2. Maltby Miners Welfare (Terry Clifford)
    3. Oughtibridge (Gavin Somerset)
    4. Lofthouse 2000 (Andrew Whitaker)
    5. Kippax (Stephen Tighe)
    6. Clifton & Lightcliffe (John Clay)
    7. Huddersfield & Ripponden (Adam Bell)
    8. Emley Brass (Garry Hallas)
    9. Deepcar Brass (Cathryn O'Shea)
    10. Gawthorpe Brass '85 (John Edward)
    11. Dinnington Colliery (Jonathan Beatty)

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 08:38:02

    Sunday line-ups in Huddersfield

    Championship Section:

    Test Piece: 'A Tale as Yet Untold' — Philip Sparke
    Sunday 8th March

    Adjudicators: Nigel Boddice MBE and Garry Cutt
    Draw: 12.30pm
    Commences: 2.30pm

    Black Dyke (Prof Nicholas Childs)
    Brighouse & Rastrick (Prof David King)
    Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Allan Withington)
    City of Bradford (Lee Skipsey)
    Crofton Silver (Dean Jones)
    Drighlington (Neil Robinson)
    Elland Silver (Daniel Brooks)
    Grimethorpe Colliery (Dr. David Thornton)
    Hammonds Saltaire (Morgan Griffiths)
    Hatfield & Askern Colliery (Stanley Lippeatt)
    Hepworth (Ryan Watkins)
    Old Silkstone (TBA) — Withdrawn
    Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)
    Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)
    Strata (Jonathan Bates)

    Third Section:

    Sunday 8th March
    Test Piece: 'Endurance — narrative variations for brass band' — Andrew Baker

    Adjudicators: David Hirst and Sarah Groarke-Booth
    Draw: 8.00am
    Commences: 9.30am

    Armthorpe Elmfield (Raymond Kilcoyne)
    Clifton & Lightcliffe (John Clay)
    Deepcar Brass (Cathryn O'Shea)
    Dinnington Colliery (Jonathan Beatty)
    Emley Brass (Garry Hallas)
    Gawthorpe Brass '85 (John Edward)
    Huddersfield & Ripponden (Adam Bell)
    Kippax (Stephen Tighe)
    Lofthouse 2000 (Andrew Whitaker)
    Maltby Miners Welfare (Terry Clifford)
    Oughtibridge (Gavin Somerset)

  • YorkshireSunday 8, 08:23:04

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    Good morning from Huddersfield

    And its an early one as well — thanks to the fire alarm going off at 5.55am in the hotel.

    We are back at the hall though to enjoy a couple of fantastic bacon butties from the brilliant catering team here and to get settled in for what promises to be a long, but engrossing day of competition.

    It kicks off with the Third Section at 9.30am, followed by the Championship Section at 2.30pm.

    We understand that there are only 14 bands taking part as Old Silkstone withdrew, with the contest due to finish around 9.00pm and with the presentations all made by 9.30pm. Fingers crossed as the organisers were just 2 minutes out yesterday — a great effort.

    Hopefully there will be more smiling faces like the great trio from the brilliant BD1 Band yesterday who won the Second Section in fantastic style.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 20:12:34

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    2020 Champion: Unite the Union

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    Second Place: Knottingley Silver

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    Third Place: South Yorkshire Police

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    Youngest Player: Lucas Williamson aged 12 of Lindley

    Result:

    First Section:

    Test Piece: Legacy (Tom Davoren)
    Saturday 7th March
    Adjudicators: Nigel Boddice MBE and Steve Pritchard-Jones

    1. Unite the Union (John Davis)*
    2. Knottingley Silver (Kevin Belcher)*
    3. South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker)
    4. Stannington Brass (Derek Renshaw)
    5. Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley)
    6. Yorkshire Imperial Band (Garry Hallas)
    7. Marsden Silver (Andrew Lofthouse)
    8. Wakefield Metropolitan (Martin Hall)
    9. Lindley (Mike Golding)
    10. Chapeltown Silver (Sam Fisher)

    *Qualify for National Final

    Best Soprano: Claire Jenkins (South Yorkshire Police)
    Best Euphonium: Elizabeth Wood (Knottingley Silver)
    Best Solo Cornet: Greg Timmins (Unite the Union)

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 19:20:45

    Who will head to Cheltenham from Huddersfield?

    Quite a hard one to call this today — with 10 bands are very much in the same ball park.

    As we have said, all the MDs tried to temper their dynamic and tonal approach — some more successfully than others, but all with the right intent.

    A solid unpretentious account from Yorkshire Imperial was full of solid musical virtues under Garry Hallas — and may get a mention in dispatches as a result. Just how high we will have to wait and see.

    There was also fine bit of band training work displayed by the experienced Duncan Beckley — no nonsense contest work — all in place and all delivered with confidence. It's another one that could find itself being mention close to the podium spots. Great perc too.

    That said we still think its between South Yorkshire Police and Stannington, with Chapletown, Unite, Yorkshire Imps and Horbury Victoria.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 19:01:15

    Legacy once again poses problems..

    Its been an engaging if somewhat frustratingly inconsistent First Section contest here in Huddersfield this evening.

    All the conductors have tried to temper the inclination to try and wrestle their way through the score with dynamic muscularity — although it seems that it is a course of action that is unfamiliar. That said, the best have made the music flow and have tried to keep a warm tonality to the sound.

    The latest trio all have their extended moments of quality, but interspersed with solo frailties and imbalance in the ensemble. The middle section and its cultured acclaim is the key. All have recognised it, but not all have managed to succeed in delivering it. There is also a recurring question mark over the obvious 'gear change' in the final section — its only about 4 notches up on the metronome, but most have seen it as a green light for the turbos to be lit. Odd.

    Some lovely touches from Knottingley that just detracted from a well directed account, whilst Marsden will know that they had far too many unforced errors — but again the musical intent was persuasive.

    A solid account from Unite the Union had a passionate drive and richly hued tonality. It could make a mark today — aided by their super perc section and classy soloists.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 18:01:56

    Legacy testing the Yorkshire hopefuls

    The first five bands have played in Huddersfield and all have taken a tempered approach to Tom Davoren's subtly nuanced work.

    There has been some very solo work on show — with some of the principal cornet work of the very highest class.

    The marker was set by a confident, free flowing Chapeltown Silver led with informed appreciation of the score by Sam Fisher. Confidence wasn't in short supply either with Stannington Brass, with Derek Renshaw using all his years of experience and know-how to draw a compact and coherent reading from the score — aided by a quite wonderful solo cornet.

    That was also the case with South Yorkshire Police — with Leigh Baker's approach perhaps the most persuasive of all the bands in the first half of this contest. All the dynamics were ordered and calibrated, as was the pacing. Little moments of unease, but it was impressive.

    Wakefield Metropolitan wore their hearts on their sleeves somewhat under Martin Hall, but it was certainly passionate if a little raw at times, whilst Lindley gave a robustly drawn account, with a fine flow but occasionally getting a touch over-wrought.

    It's been enjoyable stuff though — with the door to Cheltenham still open.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 16:26:31

    Draw:

    First Section:

    Test Piece: Legacy (Tom Davoren)
    Saturday 7th March
    Adjudicators: Nigel Boddice MBE and Steve Pritchard-Jones
    Commences: 4.15pm

    1. Chapeltown Silver (Sam Fisher)
    2. Stannington Brass (Derek Renshaw)
    3. South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker)
    4. Wakefield Metropolitan (Martin Hall)
    5. Lindley (Mike Golding)
    6. Knottingley Silver (Kevin Belcher)
    7. Marsden Silver (Andrew Lofthouse)
    8. Unite the Union (John Davis)
    9. Yorkshire Imperial Band (Garry Hallas)
    10. Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley)

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 16:21:07

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    2020 Champion: BD1

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    Second Place: Hebden Bridge

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    Third Place: Hade Edge

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    Best Instrumentalist: Matt Douglas (trombone) — BD1

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    Youngest Player: 11 year old Solomon Woodcock

    Result:

    Second Section:

    Saturday 7th March
    Test Piece: The Golden Sabre — Tales of the Hussar-Poet, Denis Davydov (Kit Turnbull)
    Adjudicators: David Hirst and Sarah Groarke-Booth

    1. BD1 Brass (Lee Skipsey)*
    2. Hebden Bridge (David Hamilton)*
    3. Hade Edge (Jamie Smith)
    4. Dronfield Genquip (Damian Wileman)
    5. Rockingham (Adam Whittle)
    6. Barnsley Brass (William Rushworth)
    7. Meltham & Meltham Mills (Tom Haslam)
    8. Slaithwaite (Matthew Hindle)
    9. Wetherby & District Silver (Derek Warley)

    *Qualify for National Final

    Best Instrumentalist: Matt Douglas (trombone) — BD1
    Youngest Player: Solomon Woodcock (Hade Egde ) — aged 11

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 15:21:45

    A last Hussar hurrah to close...

    Its been a great old scrap for the Cheltenham honours this afternoon with a trio of brave cohorts trying to muscle their way into the qualification places to close things off.

    Rockingham paced their assault almost perfectly — like an old steeplechaser just getting a nose in front of a few rivals in the last furlong. Still few lengths behind BD1 for us, but it was the way Adam Whittle paced the music that was so impressive. Had it moments — but there were some gems that stood out, like the solo trombone and solo cornet.

    Meltham's approach was much more measured in neatness and compact dynamics. Nothing overdone and perhaps just lacking a touch of visceral bloodiness, but it was a nicely measured take on the score.

    The contest was rounded off with another account that took step at a steady tread to open and then grew in intensity and passion from Hade Edge. Jamie Smith's Napoleon was in no rush to get to Borodino for sure — but when he arrived he made sure everyone knew what he was there for. It is right up there to get to Cheltenham with some very solid rivals.

    4BR Prediction:

    A clear winner for us in BD1 — with a performance right out of the top drawer.

    Who joins them there will be a hard ask for the judges, with a toss up between the likes of Hade Edge, Barnsley Brass, Rockingham and Hebden Bridge.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 14:22:41

    Borodino in the Dales...

    Yorkshire folk can be a feisty lot at times — and why not when you need to get the blood boiling in battle.

    Their danders have been well and truly up on Kit Turbull's 'Golden Sabre' — and we have been treated to performances of passion, hearty splendour and bags of character.

    The latest trio added to the Napoleonic excellence — with Barnsley Brass laying down a marker of real quality under the swagger stick baton of William Rushworth. Confidence oozed out of them all the way to the finale.

    Wetherby's brave effort seemed a little tame by comparison, but it had pockets of quality that hung together well, whilst we closed with a corker from BD1 Brass.

    Lee Skipsey may well have conducted with one arm in his trench-coat on board a white horse called Marengo such was his Boneparte command of everything in front of him.

    He was inspirational and so were his troops — playing with such verve, energy, precision and sheer Gallic joie de vivre. That was tres fantastique!

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 13:35:16

    Russian colour and passion in Yorkshire...

    We were treated to a super Fourth Section contest this morning, and we are getting more of the same here in the Second Section as well as the Yorkshire bands have certainly found the drama, passion, pathos and playful battling of Kit Tirnbull's evocative score.

    Hebden Bridge shot the impressive opening salvo with flowing take that had a dark, sharp edge of precision led by the stonking bass trom. It was a fine take on the score by the MD — both poetic and purposeful.

    It was followed by one that grew in stature and confidence from Slaithwaite — nicely paced all the way to the Borodino triumph, whilst much the same for Dronfield Genquip — growing in intensity and purpose, bolstered by great tubas and the best bit of timp playing we have heard in a while — like little cannon balls being fired from the back of the stage — and all hitting their target.

    More to come, but a good standard set.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 12:27:56

    Draw:

    Second Section:

    Saturday 7th March
    Test Piece: The Golden Sabre — Tales of the Hussar-Poet, Denis Davydov (Kit Turnbull)
    Adjudicators: David Hirst and Sarah Groarke-Booth
    Commences: 12.30pm

    1. Hebden Bridge (David Hamilton)
    2. Slaithwaite (Matthew Hindle)
    3. Dronfield Genquip (Damian Wileman)
    4. Barnsley Brass (William Rushworth)
    5. Wetherby & District Silver (Derek Warley)
    6. BD1 Brass (Lee Skipsey)
    7. Rockingham (Adam Whittle)
    8. Meltham & Meltham Mills (Tom Haslam)
    9. Hade Edge (Jamie Smith)

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 12:03:31

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    2020 Champion: Linthwaite

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    Second Place: Barnsley Metropolitan

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    Third Place: Garforth

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    Best Percussion: Garforth

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    Youngest Player — 10 year old Edward Hall

    Results:

    Fourth Section:

    Saturday 7th March
    Test Piece: Neverland (Christopher Bond)
    Adjudicators: Richard Marshall and Duncan Stubbs

    1. Linthwaite (Matthew Pilcher)
    2. Barnsley Metropolitan (Alex Francis)
    3. Garforth Brass (John Thompson)
    4. Dodworth Colliery MW (Eliot J Darwin)
    5. Friendly Band (Sowerby Bridge) (James Beecham)
    6. Loxley Silver (Richard Windle)
    7. Clifton & Lightcliffe B (Michael Silson)
    8. Thurcroft Welfare (Matthew Wright)

    Best Instrumentalist: Paul Robinson (euphonium) — Dodworth Colliery MW
    Best Percussion: Garforth Brass
    Youngest Player: Edward Hall (Thurcroft Welfare) — aged 10

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 11:21:55

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    Pitch perfect to start in Yorkshire...

    Hopefully the Fourth Section has set the template for what is to follow this weekend in Huddersfield — its been a great little contest.

    Picking a winner is going to be very difficult for the judges too — with all eight contenders having command of the basics and able to sprinkle a little bit of Tinkerbell dust on the music as well.

    The last band on stage did just that with a super show from Loxley Silver — with the ranks swelled with youngsters all giving their all and the MD encouraging them all the way. Special mention to the young girl on principal cornet who played nervelessly.

    As for a winner — such a hard one to call, but we go for a top two to head to Cheltenham of Barnsley Metropolitan and Garforth with any of Clifton and Dodworth just behind.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 10:58:28

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    More Neverland enjoyment in Huddersfield

    Plenty more good quality playing, impish fun and melodic warmth on show with the next trio of contenders here in the Fourth Section.

    Christopher Bond's super test-piece really does have something for everyone to get a hook into (especially the Captains at the helm) — with all the players from sop down to the tubas having something of interest to add to the performance from start to finish.

    The percussion writing is excellent and the secret to make it work is to keep things light and breezy — and that is what all the bands have done so far.

    Another trio of quality to enjoy — led by Dodworth's solid effort followed by Thurcroft Welfare and Friendly Band (Sowerby Bridge) — all bringing the music to life. There were some super contributions from the youngsters in all of the bands — from the tremendous little kit player with Dodworth and the nipper on 2nd cornet in between two Methuselah's with Thurcroft (above) and the super little players dotted about with Friendly Band (Sowerby Bridge).

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 10:11:07

    Support from the top...

    Grimethorpe offer their support for all bands competing this weekend.

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 09:59:36

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    Off to a flyer in Huddersfield...

    Well what a great start to the contest weekend here in Huddersfield, with a trio of super performances from Linthwaite, Garforth Brass and Barnsley Metropolitan in the Fourth Section.

    Huge credit to the three conductors — Matthew Pilcher, John Thompson and Alex Francis for directing with a real ear for the character of the music and an eye for the detail — especially the dynamics.

    Linthwaite brought a nice light touch and plenty of verve to open with the four horns giving a juicy middle of the band sound, whilst Garforth also had bags of character and drive — aided by the excellent percussion team and a classy set of soloists led by teh principal cornet.

    Lots of little Peter Pans with Barnsley Metropolitan in the ranks — and a special mention to the two youngsters on Eb and Bb tuba, the young ones on trombone, baritones and euphs and cornet. Great stuff. The MD is a bit of a Peter Pan himself — Alex never seems to grow any older by the year!!!

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 09:17:03

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    Talking about winning titles...

    Whoever wins here at Huddersfield Town Hall will do well to go on and bag more trophies and medals as local girl Anita Lonsbrough.

    The swimmer won the lot — Olympic, European and Empire Games...

    The plaque in her honour is can be seen on the wall here...

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 09:08:16

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    Draw:

    Fourth Section:

    Saturday 7th March
    Test Piece: Neverland (Christopher Bond)
    Adjudicators: Richard Marshall and Duncan Stubbs
    Commences: 9.15am

    1. Linthwaite (Matthew Pilcher)
    2. Garforth Brass (John Thompson)
    3. Barnsley Metropolitan (Alex Francis)
    4. Dodworth Colliery MW (Eliot J Darwin)
    5. Thurcroft Welfare (Matthew Wright)
    6. Friendly Band (Sowerby Bridge) (James Beecham)
    7. Clifton & Lightcliffe B (Michael Silson)
    8. Loxley Silver (Richard Windle)

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 08:03:48

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    Saturday in Huddersfield

    Yorkshire gets underway with Section 4 at 9.15am. Section 2 is set to get underway at 12.30pm followed by Section 1 at 4.15pm.

    First Section:

    Test Piece: Legacy (Tom Davoren)
    Saturday 7th March
    Adjudicators: Nigel Boddice MBE and Steve Pritchard-Jones
    Draw: 2.45pm
    Commences: 4.15pm

    Chapeltown Silver (Sam Fisher)
    Horbury Victoria (Duncan Beckley)
    Knottingley Silver (Kevin Belcher)
    Lindley (Mike Golding)
    Marsden Silver (Andrew Lofthouse)
    Stannington Brass (Derek Renshaw)
    South Yorkshire Police (Leigh Baker)
    Unite the Union (John Davis)
    Wakefield Metropolitan (Martin Hall)
    Yorkshire Imperial Band (Garry Hallas)

    Second Section:

    Saturday 7th March
    Test Piece: The Golden Sabre — Tales of the Hussar-Poet, Denis Davydov (Kit Turnbull)
    Adjudicators: David Hirst and Sarah Groarke-Booth
    Draw: 11.00am
    Commences: 12.30pm

    Barnsley Brass (William Rushworth)
    BD1 Brass (Lee Skipsey)
    Dronfield Genquip (Damian Wileman)
    Hade Edge (Jamie Smith)
    Hebden Bridge (David Hamilton)
    Meltham & Meltham Mills (Tom Haslam)
    Rockingham (Adam Whittle)
    Slaithwaite (Matthew Hindle)
    Wetherby & District Silver (Derek Warley)

    Fourth Section:

    Saturday 7th March
    Test Piece: Neverland (Christopher Bond)
    Adjudicators: Richard Marshall and Duncan Stubbs
    Draw: 7.45am
    Commences: 9.15am

    Barnsley Metropolitan (Alex Francis)
    Clifton & Lightcliffe B (Michael Silson)
    Dodworth Colliery MW (Eliot J Darwin)
    Friendly Band (Sowerby Bridge) (James Beecham)
    Garforth Brass (John Thompson)
    Linthwaite (Matthew Pilcher)
    Loxley Silver (Richard Windle)
    Thurcroft Welfare (Matthew Wright)

  • YorkshireSaturday 7, 01:57:21

    Good morning from Yorkshire

    There is also a busy day in prospect here in Huddersfield where we will bring you all the action as it unfolds.... More to come when we get to the hal and settle down with a nice cup of local tea...

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The Marple Band - Marple and Hawk Green Bands Concert Compstall

Saturday 7 November • St Pauls Church, Compstall Rd, Compstall, Stockport, Cheshire SK6 5HU


The Marple Band - Marple Band Family Christmas Concert

Friday 18 December • Marple Conservative Club, church Lane, Marple, SK6 6AY


Contest: Butlins Mineworkers Festival

Saturday 30 January • Roman Bank, Ingoldmells, Skegness PE25 1NJ


Contest: Butlins Mineworkers Festival

Sunday 31 January • Roman Bank, Ingoldmells, Skegness PE25 1NJ


Black Dyke Band - Brighouse & Rastrick, Huddersfield Town Hall

Saturday 27 March • Corporation St, Huddersfield HD1 2TA


Amesbury Town Band

October 21 • Players and beginners of any standard are always warmly welcomed especially some more solo cornets and a spare percussionists to help out existing players. Feel free to drop in even if you just fancy a blow or want to try another instrument. After Covid!


Shipston Town Band

October 8 • We are currently looking to recruit a Bass Trombone BBb bass and EEb bass to bring the band up to strength ready for when things return to normal. We are graded section 3 in the Midlands taking part in a good range of concerts and contests,


Milton Keynes Brass

October 5 • Applications are invited for a baritone player for Milton Keynes Brass. We are a friendly 1st section band based in Milton Keynes and rehearsals take place on Tuesday evenings, 7:45pm-10:00pm, with additional rehearsals before contests.


Dr. Stephen Arthur Allen

D. Phil. (Oxon) [Ph.D Oxford University], GBSM, LTCL, ABSM, ALCM, Cert. Ed.


               

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