I have been playing with Boarshurst band since I was 5. I started in the training band, then moved to the youth band, and in 2008 I moved to Boarshurst Silver Band aged 13. My whole family have played for Boarshurst, including my 2 uncles who played the bass (Bb and Eb), my cousin on horn, my dad and sister on cornet, and my grandad who used to play the bass drum on Whit Fridays. I also have my mum, brother and sisters who play in the band with me now.
Whit Friday is one of my favourite times of the year. I am proud to play in the Whit Walks in the morning traditionally playing Hail Smiling Morn. As for marches, my favourite march to listen to is The Wizard, but my favourite one to play is The President.
I have gone up the ranks whilst playing at Boarshurst and my proudest moment was playing at the National Finals on solo horn where we played Music of a Legacy and we won! However, my favourite test piece to listen to is the Year of the Dragon.
My family and I have been born into Boarshurst and love playing in the band.
I started banding at the age of 6 in Mount Pleasant Mission Church Band in Oldham under the tuition of Albert Hall. Then at the age of 13, I moved on to Zion Methodist Band in Lees. In 1985 this became Cobden Chadwick Band and after a successful few years, I had to leave the band to take up a work opportunity in Switzerland for 12 months.
On my return to the UK, I realised I missed banding and joined Greenfield Band where I also took up the position of Secretary. I then moved on to Uppermill Band and then on to Lees and Glodwick Band; these were fun times. In time, Lees and Glodwick Band merged with one of my previous bands (Cobden Chadwick) to become Oldham ‘97. During this period, I was lucky enough to be offered an audition at British Aerospace Band (Championship Section) where I was successful and joined on 2nd horn.
After the unfortunate closure of the band, I moved to Longridge who were in the first section. One of the highlights of my banding was winning the first section regionals at Blackpool and going on to compete at the Royal Albert Hall in the year 2000. Unfortunately, due to work commitments and the long commute I moved to Walkden Band in Bolton and from there I eventually moved to Goodshaw Band.
Having previously been a guest player for Boarshurst on numerous occasions and having many friends in the band I officially joined in 2006. I have had some of my most memorable moments with the band, becoming 2nd Section National Champions of Great Britain in 2017 is certainly one of my highlights.
They say banding is a hobby but it certainly becomes a way of life. I have made some fantastic friends along the way, both at home and abroad (especially my great friends from Holland, Pieter Einthoven and Ilse de Jong). Boarshurst are my extended family and long may it continue.
There are a lot people in the band who do a little more than just play, me being one as I am Contest Secretary and in charge of handling the uniforms.
I've been playing in brass bands for 10 years, first starting off on cornet and changing onto tenor horn in 2016. I originally started off in Boarshurst Youth Band and moved to Dobcross Youth Band a few years later. In 2016, I moved back to Boarshurst and joined the Silver Band at the age of 18.
I enjoy a multitude of different brass band arrangements but particularly like the test piece “A Saddleworth Festival Overture” arranged by Goff Richards and the march “Mephistopheles” by Shipley Douglas.
I first started playing as it's a tradition of the family. My grandad used to play euphonium for a number of different bands around Saddleworth, and I wanted to follow in his footsteps of being a bandsman.
I started playing the cornet at 11 years old and for the vast majority of my childhood I was self-taught. The first youth band I joined was Bolton Youth Brass Band. I continued playing with them until I was 16 when I decided to have a break from playing. At the age of 26, I started a music degree and began playing my cornet again under my tutor Mark Wilkinson.
I joined Boarshurst Band 5 years ago on front row cornet but I now hold the flugel seat. We have played many pieces but so far Fire In The Blood is my favourite test piece and The President is my favourite March.
I’m also the singer in Alchemy which is a function band made up of players from the band who perform at parties and weddings, covering all styles of music from soul to pop.