We've got a busy couple of weeks ahead in the run-up to Christmas:

On Wednesday, 7th and Sunday, 11th December we are accompanying Ray Farr as he holds his Conducting Masterclass in Fishburn's bandroom.
On Thursday, 8 December 2005 why not come along to Fishburn Green as the band play Carols by the Tree starting at 7 pm.

Saturday, 10 December sees the band return to one of their favourite venues - the trolley park at Tesco's, Durham for a spot of fundraising!

On Thursday, 15 December, starting at 7.30 pm we are holding a joint concert with the Durham County Wind Band in Elvet Church, Durham and on Friday night, 16 December 2005 the band performs in their annual Christmas Concert in the Fishburn Workingmen's Club, starting at 8.15 pm.  

The week after sees Fishburn Band returning to Hunwick Church on Tuesday, 20 December for a Christmas Concert and on Wednesday, 21 December we travel to play carols at Middleton St George

We hope you can come along to one of the above events to hear the Band.

Bandroom News 05.12.05


Fishburn Band are the Scottish Open Brass Band Champions  2005 - Official!

After an excellent performance of St Magnus at the Championships on 27 November, the Band were proudly awarded first place by Adjudicators Richard Evans and David Horsfield against some very elite opposition.  This is the best result that the Band have ever achieved in its 50 year history and we intend to keep the momentum going as we enter a busy period of concerts and contests. 

Expertly conducted by Ray Farr after some excellent preparation work by our Resident Conductor, Chris Bentham, the Band were praised for a very controlled and musically shaped performance (Click here to read the remarks)  This is a very deserved result for the Band after a great deal of hard work, skill and dedication on a very difficult test piece over the last few weeks.

Ray received a commemorative Quaich for 'Winning Conductor' and received personal praise from the adjudicators for his direction and musical interpretation of St Magnus.
Bandroom News 27.11.05


It's great to report that Fishburn Band were placed 3rd at the recent Pontins Contest, with Wingates taking 2nd and Staffordshire taking top honours (once again). The general concensus was that we were in with a shout of the top spot but it wasn't to be.   We must also thank Judd who returned from his 'cruising' to help out on the back row and to Les and Tim (Reg Vardy and Easington Bands respectively) who played for us at the contest.  Once again, we all had a great weekend that also included an impromptu tour of Wales.  Unfortunately the bus driver took the 'scenic route' from Chester to Prestatyn and after adding about 45 miles onto the journey, we arrived with about 30 minutes to spare - just enough time for a 'warm up' and then straight onto the stage for a performance that had much to commend (click here to read the adjudicators' comments).    We're now rehearsing for the Scottish Open, Glasgow at the end of November, when the band will be playing St Magnus under the watchful eye of Ray Farr.  But first, next Sunday (13.11.05) the band will be playing for the Remembrance Parade at Birtley.

Bandroom News 07.11.05


Fishburn Band will have a new look back-row at the Pontins Contest at Prestatyn on Sunday, 30 October 2005 due to the departure of Jo Brown and the 'semi-retirement' of Audrey Gill following dental surgery.  We wish Jo well as she returns back to her beloved Yorkshire and thank her for her services to the band as a player and Committee Member.  Tim Machin and Len Potts will play 2nd Cornet and Andrea White has been joined on 3rd Cornet by John Youll who has moved from the Horn Section.

Bandroom News 21.10.05  

Bowburn Community Centre
Friday, 30 September 2005
7.30 pm start
(tickets available at the door)


Congratulations this month goes to Neil Parkin and his team 'Bari Town' who romped away with the title of Manager of the Month for September with 46 points.  Runner-Up this month was Jeff Bell and his Bellselecta (Hee Hee) with 32 points. Neil's good showing over the last four weeks has seen his team take over the top spot  in the League with a total of 90 points, nudging Jo and Audrey's team, Thrifty in Th'aisle back into 2nd place (77 points).

Bandroom News 27.09.05


That's it for another year - the holidays are over and done with and we're back in the Bandroom to start rehearsing for concerts at Bowburn (30 September) and Dobcross (2 October) and contests at Prestatyn (October), Glasgow (November) and Butlins at Skegness (January 06). 

So what's been happening over the last month or so, well we've had our football auction for the 2005/06 season.  You can check out this year's runners and riders by looking hereBut, once again, as with last season, Jo and Audrey's team, Thrifty in Th'Aisle, made a good start by taking the honours of Managers of the Month for August.  It was also great to have 2 visitors to one of our August rehearsals from California - Norm and Linda Taylor - who were touring the UK, taking in a couple of summer music schools and travelled to the North East to see us after contacting via the website.

We can also announce that we have made a couple of signings over the summer - Laura (on Horn) and Beth (on percussion).  Let's hope their time with the Band will be happy and successful.

Bandroom News 10.09.05


We are now rehearsing for our pre gala concert at Fishburn Club on Friday 8 July and are aiming to give the concert the 'Big Band' treatment led by our very enthusiastic MD, Anthony Taylor

The following day, we will be enjoying our annual day out at the Durham Miners Gala.  Once again our excellent supporters Judy and Peter Evans will be walking to Durham from Fishburn on the morning of the Gala in order to raise funds for the band.  They will follow the band as we march around the streets of Fishburn early on the Saturday morning, before heading off, on foot to Durham.  They will once again hopefully be meeting up with the band in Durham on the 'show-field' in readiness for the band playing 'Gresford' in front of the dignitaries just prior to the start of the speeches.  It is hoped that as in other years, Barclays Bank will 'match-fund' any money raised which will help boost our much needed funds. If anyone wishes to support the band by sponsoring Judy and Peter's walk, please contact any of the band officials on this site.

Bandroom News 30.06.05


Unfortunately, the Contest at Vane Tempest on Sunday 3 July 2005 has been cancelled due to lack of interest.  We were looking forward to playing one of our favourite pieces, 'Paganini' which we played at a recent concert in Consett Empire.

Bandroom News 30.06.05

Gavin Probert

Gavin has recently left the Band due to his successful application for a teaching post in Somerset at a Sixth Form College.  Our '4th man down' on the Solo Cornet bench, Gavin has been working locally doing teacher training having gained his PhD and has now secured employment nearer to his 'home' in Wales .  Gavin had two separate spells with the Band and recently rejoined us from Gateshead Brass. We all wish Gavin the very best of luck in his new post and we're sure he'll soon be seeking out a Band in the Somerset area to display his talents.

Bandroom News 30.06.05


An excellent concert was enjoyed by an enthusiastic audience at our joint concert with the University of Durham Brass Band at Elvet Church, Durham on 17 June 2005.  There were a few changes in 'playing positions' on that night as concert organiser Jo Brown, who normally sits on 2nd cornet in Fishburn played her 'beloved' Flugel in the University Band and displayed her wonderful melodic sound in the Flugel Solo 'Don't it make my brown eyes blue'   Our 2nd/3rd cornet player, Tim Machin was the Principal Cornet of the University Band showing great composure and control in his solo work, and our Solo Horn player Steve Hardy was (naturally) the Solo Horn of the University band and played a very enjoyable full toned rendition of the Judy Garland classic 'Somewhere over the Rainbow'.  Some 'old boys' (who shall remain nameless) from Fishburn Band assisted the University Band in their solo spot also.  There was an 'Italian' theme played by Fishburn on the night with the playing of Carnival Romaine,  Napoli (Cornet solo, John Gill),  On with the Motley (Soprano solo, Mal Usher),  La Danza  and  Pines of Rome.

Bandroom News 30.06.05


Another hard fought season concluded with John, Mal & Kieran Gill's team 'Seymour Butts' sweeping the board, winning the League, the League series competition and the FA Cup. 

The final top placings were:

League winners                                 Seymour Butts
Runners up                                         Bari Town
League Series winners                    Seymour Butts
Runners up                                         Phoenix Knights
FA Cup winners                                 Seymour Butts
Runners up                                         Horn End United

We're all looking forward to next season already!

Bandroom News 30.06.05

Concert with Roger Webster as guest soloist

Fishburn Band are delighted to announce that world famous cornet soloist and principal cornet of the Black Dyke Band, Roger Webster will be appearing with us as a guest soloist.  Roger will be performing with the band on 23rd April at Empire Theatre, Consett, County Durham. Tickets are £6 adults, £4 concessions and are available from:

The Empire theatre box office- 01207 218171

Jeff Bell- 07841 395646


Or any member of the Fishburn band.

Bandroom News 02.04.05

Band Dinner & Disco evening

An excellent time was had by all at our dinner & disco evening at Bowburn Hall on Friday 18 March.  See a selection of photographs by clicking here.   Highlight of the evening was Anthony Taylor demonstrating his ability to do the Peter Kay walk during Tony Christies 'Show me the way to Amarillo'.   We're sure that Chris will now add this to our next entertainment programme!

Bandroom News 25.03.05

Area Contest 27 February 2005

After some excellent preparation work in rehearsals and drawn to play last of nine bands on the day at the area contest being led by professional Musical Director Major Ian McElligott, the Band were in confident mood to qualify for the National Finals this year.  After a very good musical performance of Richard Wagners Rienzi which we felt might just win over the judge Geoffrey Whitham, once again it just wasn't to be our day with a disappointing 4th place being awarded to the Band.  Click here to read the remarks. 

Winners for the 4th year in succession came Reg Vardy (Formerly Ever Ready) who are currently in a rich vein of form, with our current resident MD Chris Bentham on Solo Trombone.  Runners up were Chester-Le-Street Riverside Band, led by former Fishburn Player and Musical Director Ian Robinson, and in 3rd place, BHK (UK) Ltd Horden Band.. All three bands have the pleasure of playing in the National Finals at the Royal Albert Hall in London this October.  We wish all three bands congratulations on their success and wish them the very best of luck and hope they do the North area proud.
Bandroom News 01.03.05

Fishburn Fantasy Football League

Managers of the Month for February are the 'All Gill's team ~ Seymour Butts' managed by John, Mal and Kieran.  They are now a force to be reckoned with currently leading both the 'League Series' table and the 'FA Cup' table, and look good to rise to the top of the league on the run in to the end of the season!  Check out our league by clicking here.
Bandroom News 01.03.05

Website Anniversary

Happy 4th anniversary to our very popular website on 25th February 2005.  Many thanks to all our regular and new visitors who give us the pleasure and motivation to keep the site regularly updated. 
Bandroom News 25.02.05

Committee Changes

Following our recent AGM, we now have a new Band Manager with the appointment of our long serving and highly respected Percussionist Carole Bell.  Carole has already been exercising her new found authority in a very enthusiastic and confident manner with the Band at rehearsals.  Carole has taken over as Band Manager from Mal Usher who we wish to extend our gratitude for the excellent service and great deal of hard work put in over his period of office.  Mal has taken over the position of librarian and thinks this means he won't end up with much work to do!

We also have a new committee member in our very charismatic 2nd cornet (and stand-in Flugel) player Jo Brown.  We're sure Jo will come up with lots of new ideas to help the future development of the Band and she has already started promoting the Band by organising a joint concert with the University of Durham brass band on 17 June at Elvet Church, Durham.  Many thanks go to Paul White who has stepped down from the committee to concentrate his efforts on his university studies.  Again, many thanks must go to Paul for all his hard work over the last couple of years.

Bandroom News 22.02.05

Major Ian McElligott to take Fishburn

Fishburn Band are delighted to announce that Major Ian McElligott has accepted the offer to lead the band in its challenge for the forthcoming Northern Area and Grand Shield Championships.

The band is really looking forward to working with the Major again after their successful performance, if not desired result at the 2004 Grand Shield contest.

With the hard work that the band, the Major and their resident conductor Chris Bentham are putting in over the forthcoming weeks, and with such a talented MD on the contest stage, it is hoped the band can challenge for the prizes at both contests.

Bandroom News 21.02.05


A very happy 50th birthday on Tuesday 8 February, to our long serving Tenor Horn Player John Youll.  Just another 50 to go to get your telegram off the Queen!   
Best wishes from all the Band.

Bandroom News 08.02.05


Congratulations to our resident Musical Director Chris and his bride Nicola (Nee Williamson) on their wedding on Saturday 5 February 2005.  We wish them both many years of happiness.
Bandroom News 07.02.05


After a hectic rehearsal schedule and 2 days of contesting, we just didn't get the rewards expected.  The playing of 'Harmony Music' on Saturday received a very creditable 4th placing, which could have been improved upon had we not had the uncharacteristic minor errors.  Our entertainment programme was well received by the audience for which we received many compliments including many who thought we should have won the entertainment prize, but unfotunately the 'men in the box' didn't quite catch on to what was possibly emphasising the visual rather than the musical content.  Click here to read the remarks
Bandroom News 05.02.05


We are very sad to hear of the death of brass band stalwart Keith Watson.  Keith was a friend of many members within Fishburn Band and was for many years associated with Easington Colliery Band, both as a cornet player and official of the Band.  He also held various committee positions within the Northern area and Durham League committees giving years of service to brass bands as a whole.  We wish to extend our heartfelt sympathy to Keith's family.  He was a true gentleman who will be sadly missed.   Keiths funeral will be held at 2 pm on Thursday 20 January 2005 at Easington Village Church. 

Bandroom News 17.01.05


Fishburn Band are extremely happy to announce that we have secured welcome financial assistance for the next three years from Thompsons Solicitors

Thompsons Solicitors are the largest specialist personal injury practice in the UK with over 800 staff in a network of 20 Offices nationwide.  Since 1921 they have been closely involved in the growth and development of the trade union movement, taking a direct part in helping unions protect the interests of their members.

Announcing the support, Thompsons Solicitors' North East Branch Manager, Robert Wood said:  "Our sponsorship is based on our wish to build, strengthen and maintain our links with the communities we have served for many years.  Fishburn Band are an integral part of the community they serve and a by-word for excellence.  We are proud to be associated with them."

Mal Usher, Band Manager commented: "We are delighted that Thompsons Solicitors have agreed to provide the Band with some financial support for the next three years.  The Band continually strives to maintain its high profile and standards both on and off stage and the help from Thompsons Solicitors will help the Band achieve this.  I would also like to thank Billy Elliott for all his hard work in helping secure this support."

Bandroom News 09.01.05


What a great way to end the year - Audrey and Jo's Phoenix Knights topped the table and also took the honours for Managers of the Month for December with a magnificent total of 83 points (oh how everyone mocked when they picked their team of 'pretty boys').  However, runner-up for December was Neil Simpson's Kwik E Mart XI who is also hot on their heels in the League Table.

Bandroom News 06.01.05


May we take this opportunity of wishing everyone in the band, our friends and supporters, a very HAPPY NEW YEAR.   We have a busy schedule over the coming weeks with a joint concert at the new Sage Centre in Gateshead on Sunday, 16 January, quickly followed by two contests at Butlins a week later and then the North of England Championships which will now take place in February.   Here's hoping that 2005 will be a successful year for the band.

Bandroom News 01.01.05

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