There was an excellent line-up of bands competing at the popular Oxfordshire & District Brass Band Association contest in Woodstock on the weekend.
Adjudicator Paul Norley certainly enjoyed the competitive action led by Kidlington Concert Brass who retained the ornate Championship Section Shield from Midland rivals Langley Band.
The winners also took the individual prizes for cornet, horns, tubas and percussion for their contribution to the winning performance of Philip Sparke's 'A Tale As Yet Untold', which they perform once again at the Regional Championships in Stevenage at the end of March.
The contest gave the bands in each section the opportunity to showcase their preparations ahead of their Area challenges, with confidence boosting victories secured for City of Bristol in the First Section performing Tom Davoren's 'Legacy', Oxford Cherwell Brass in the Second with 'The Golden Sabre', Ocean Brass in the Third playing 'Endurance' and Witney Town in the Fourth performing 'Neverland'.
They were particularly delighted as the band's principal cornet player Ali Howes took the 'Best Instrumentalist' award.
In the Unregistered Section Hook Norton Band took the honours with their super rendition of Malcolm Arnold's 'Little Suite for Brass No1.'
There were also a host of individual and section awards, although there was a special cheer for the youngest player presentation given to 9 year old Alex Ballantyne-Drake of City of Oxford Training Band and to Brunel Brass Academy who took to the stage with no less than 24 players under the age of 19.
1. Kidlington Concert Brass (Trevor Jones) — 186
2. Langley Band (Cliff Parker) — 185
Best Instrumentalist: Saphran Ali (euphonium) — Langley Band
Best Percussion: Kidlington Concert Brass
Best Bass Section: Kidlington Concert Brass
Best Cornet: Tom James (Kidlington Concert Brass)
Best Tenor Horn: Marilyn Elliott (Kidlington Concert Brass)
1. City of Bristol (Ian Holmes) — 186
2. Cawston Band (Leigh Sharpe) — 184
3. Hyde (Andy Wareham) — 182
4. Bedworth Brass (Wayne Ruston) — 181
5. SPAL Sovereign Brass (Neil Samuel) — 180
6. A.W. Parker (Drybrook) (Joshua Ruck) — 179
7. Shirley Band (Tom Stoneman) — 178
Best Instrumentalist: Euphonium — City of Bristol
Best Percussion: City of Bristol
Best Bass Section: City of Bristol
Best Cornet: Cawston
Best Tenor Horn: City of Bristol
1. Oxford Cherwell Brass (Terry Brotherhood) — 174
2. Wigston Band (Rob Boulter) — 173
3. Wotton under Edge & District (Ian Dickinson) — 172
Best instrumentalist: Andy Lake (Eb Bass) — Oxford Cherwell Brass
1. Ocean Brass (Martin Humphries) — 176
2. Gosport Solent Brass (Colin Garner) — 174
3. Shipston Town Band (Howard Gibbs) — 171
4. Ratby Mid band (Gary Perrin) — 170
5. City of Bath Brass Band (Martin Perry) — 169
6. Jubilee Brass (Oxford) (Clifford Sadler) — 168
7. Cubbington Silver Band (Mark Phillips) — 167
8. Tadley Concert Brass (Paul Chapman) — 166
Best Instrumentalist: Grace Coates (cornet) — Shipston Town
1. Witney Town Band (Chris Barker) — 171
2. Coventry Festival Band (Allan Wheelhouse) — 169
3. Bletchington Silver Band (Sheldon Barwick) — 168
4. City of Oxford Band (Gareth Coulson) — 167
5. Abbey Brass (Abingdon) Band (Rob Tompkins) — 166
6. Wantage Academy Band (Nikki Jones) — 165
7. Brunel Brass Academy (Ben Halstead) — 164
Best Instrumentalist: Ali Howes (Cornet) Witney Town Band
1. Hook Norton Brass Band (Shaun Humphries) — 156
2. Yarnton Band (Guy James) — 155
3. Watership Brass (Mark Picken) — 154
4. City of Oxford Training Band (Catherine Westbury-Cook) — 153
Best Instrumentalist: Euphonium (Watership Brass)
Youngest Player: Alex Ballantyne-Drake (City of Oxford Training Band)
Band with most players under 19: Brunel Brass Academy