Gresley Colliery Band finish second in Midlands Area Brass Band Contest
Latest News | March 17, 2015
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CELEBRATIONS are under way after a brass band landed a spot in a major national final.
Gresley Colliery Brass Band was awarded second place at the Midlands Area Brass Band Contest paving a route into the national finals due to be held in September in Cheltenham.
The qualifying contest took place at Bedworth Civic Hall and the band, made up of 30 people, was conducted by Simon Jones.
They performed Philips Sparke's A London Overture with solo performances by trombonist Adrian Taylor, Paul Brockwell on the tenor horn, Mandy Holling on the principal cornet and Samantha Pope on the principal euphonium.
If the band go on to win this competition they will be promoted to the top level for competitions – the championship sector.
Fay Bayliss, a trombone player with the band, spoke to the Mail and revealed that all members were 'over the moon' about the news.
She said: "It gives us the chance at the next championship finals and we are delighted at that.
"We like a big challenge and it will certainly be a bigger and better challenge and we are very, very excited.
"All the hard work has really paid off and it is a great team to be a part of.
"We are all great friends and from different walks of life.
"These competitions allow us to practice to be the best we can be and it is all about raising the standard of the band."
The band trains once a week and put on additional rehearsals in the run-up to the competition, including making sure band members take the responsibility to practice at home and in their spare time.
Mrs Bayliss added: "It is real personal practicing as you have to be able to master the instrument and the music."
The band was founded in the 1850s. Currently the youngest member of the band is 16 with the oldest 67.
But the group is looking for more people to join it at rehearsals which take place from 8pm every Thursday at Gresley Old Hall, in Church Gresley. The band is also appealing for sponsorships or donations as it is self financed and participating in the national finals will be 'financially challenging'.