Whitburn search for hero link

The Scottish Open champion is looking to find out more information about a bandsman killed in the First World War.

  The Whitburn Band is hoping to be able to speak to surviving relatives of Private William Aitken

The Whitburn Band is appealing for information about a former bandsman who was killed in the First World War.

Private William Aitken of the Royal Scots died in action on December 3rd, 1917. He was aged just 20 and was subsequently buried at Duhallow ADS Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery in Belgium.


In a newspaper report from January 1918, under the headline 'Whitburn Bandsman Killed', it states how Private Aitken was "a member of Whitburn Public Band, which he joined when he was 12-years-old".

Current tuba player Robert Fraser is working on a major archive project about the band in preparation for their upcoming 150th anniversary in 2020 and is planning to travel to France where he plans visit Private Aitken's grave.


Ahead of the trip, Robert is hoping to contact any relatives of the player, as he told 4BR: "Private Aitken is just one thousands of British soldiers who lost their lives in the First World War.

Coming across his story has reminded everyone involved in the Whitburn organisation of the sacrifice that bandsmen made at the time, and what that meant for the families left behind. William's father, also called William, was a member of the band as well.

The current Whitburn Band will honour one of its own when I travel to France next month and I want to ask if anyone knows of the Aitken family or their relatives to get in touch so they can be part of this time of remembrance and reflection."

Coming across his story has reminded everyone involved in the Whitburn organisation of the sacrifice that bandsmen made at the time, and what that meant for the families left behindRobert Fraser


If you have any information, please e-mail the band on whitburnsecretary@hotmail.com or call 07830 515357

Become a supporter and help make our future secure.

4barsrest continues to be a proudly independent voice. There are no paywalls to overcome to be able to enjoy what we do to keep our journalism at the heart of the brass banding world. Support us with a one-off donation or subscribe from just £2.50 per month.

Support us    

Ray Farr Flugels

10th anniversary sees two additions to Ray Farr Flugels

December 1 • Two new traditional models are added to the Ray Farr Flugel range to celebrate the company's 10th anniversary.


4BR Quiz: First day of Festive Fun

December 1 • You can get your hands on four great CDs from Brighouse & Rastrick, Cory, Grimethorpe and Tredegar if you can get your thinking caps on...


The sound of the Robin on Radio 3

December 1 • The sweet euphonium sound of Liz Lane's 'Robin, Robin' was heard on Radio 3 recently, played by Steven Mead and Brighouse & Rastrick Band.

Midlands Core

New venue for Midlands Area contest

November 30 • The Midlands Regional Championships will take place in a brand new venue in 2022

Regent Hall Concerts - The Band of the Grenadiers Guards

Friday 3 December • Regent Hall (The Salvation Army). 275 Oxford Street. London WC1 2 DJ


Saturday 4 December • St Andrew's Methodist Church . The Stow. Harlow CM20 3AF

VBS Poynton Brass Band - Christmas Concert

Sunday 5 December • Poynton Civic Centre SK12 1RB

Regent Hall Concerts - Royal Greenwich Brass Band

Sunday 5 December • St Alfege Church. Greenwich Church St. London SE10 9BJ

Glossop Old Band - Besses o'th' Barn Band.

Sunday 5 December • Glossop Band Club, Derby Street, Glossop. SK13 8LP

Staines Brass

November 30 • Staines Brass 1st Section are looking for , Solo Euphonium player to join our ranks. Our rehearsal nights are Thursday 8pm and we are based The Lammas Park, Staines, TW18 4XZ

The Marple Band

November 29 • Want a change of scene. We're a friendly group of 1st Section musicians who are looking for a Bb Bass player, variety of cornets(depending on experience), 2nd Horn, 2nd Trombone and kit percussion. We are currently preparing for NW Regionals.

Wotton and District Silver Band

November 28 • Vacancy for PERCUSSIONIST.

John Maines

BA (Hons)
Presenter, compere and conductor


 © 2021 4barsrest.com Ltd