Mop Fair
The Band and many of its Training Band members led the evening procession of the Mayor and other dignitaries for the opening of the annual Mop Fair in Tewkesbury on Monday 9th October. The Band led the parade from Gander Lane to the fair at The Cross playing the simple but jolly 'Circus March' from a suite of tunes by Chris North that currently forms part of the Training Band's repertoire.

 

11th - 13th August - Training Band Tour to Sidmouth

Last weekend, the Training band enjoyed its second annual tour to Sidmouth. This year the tour was extended by one day as we left on Friday morning instead of Saturday. On Friday 11th we all met at the Ashchurch Army Camp to board the coach for Sidmouth. We just about managed to fit all the camping stuff, band instruments, stands and chairs underneath the coach, then it was off down the M5 and we arrived at the camp site bang on schedule at around 1pm. Then there was a quick dash to put the tents up as it threatened to rain (again!). Luckily, this year, there was just a sprinkling of rain and then although it threatened, we didn't really see it again all weekend!

 

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Once we had set up camp, including the Windor's Castle (!), we all sat down for our picnic lunch. Then there was time for a few games of rounder's before heading off to meet up with members of the Sidmouth Youth Band. Unfortunately, many of their players were away on holiday but we were pleased to meet up with those who were there and joined together to make some lovely music!

Following the rehearsal, we were invited to the Volunteer pub next door where their senior band were about to play and entertain the crowds at a hog roast. They generously invited some of our band to join in! Although some got a little cold, it was a very enjoyable evening.
 

Saturday 12th began with many comparing how cold they had got during the night - me included - it was freezing and I hardly got any sleep due to shivering! This didn't put us off our freshly cooked bacon and sausage rolls though or deter us from waking the camp site with a rehearsal at 9:30am! Following this we headed off to Ottery St Mary and then on to Otter Nurseries, a garden centre and our first concert venue. The Garden Centre made us feel very welcome and we entertained the crowds of shoppers for a good 2 hours with a break for lunch (or ice cream with clotted cream!!! Yum yum!!).

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After a quick change back at the camp site, it was then time to hit the beach (or the shops in Sidmouth). Some were even brave (or crazy) enough to go in to the cold sea for a swim! Others just paddled and made sandcastles. That evening, we enjoyed a BBQ (courtesy of Waitrose) with fun and games on the camp site, topped off by a good old sing song!

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Sunday morning began in similar style to the day before with breakfast and then practise on the campsite. The highlight of the tour, for some, was next with a visit to the worlds largest donkey sanctuary! Some walked from the camp site and others took the easy option of the coach. Then it was back to the campsite for lunch and to change in to our uniforms for our concert in Sidmouth.

 

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picture to follow We were pleased to play once again in Connaught Gardens where there is a fantastic outdoor stage. This year, members of the Sidmouth Youth Band joined us for the entire concert and did some stunning sight reading! It was a very enjoyable concert. Unfortunately, it was then time to head back to the campsite to pack the tents away and return to Tewkesbury. picture to follow
picture to follow It was a thoroughly enjoyable weekend for everyone involved. We would like to thank Waitrose for the provision of our BBQ food, all the campers and owners of Kingsdown Tail Camp Site for putting up with our noise, and we would especially like to thank Adrian Harvey and Sidmouth Town Band for making us feel so welcome. picture to follow

Churchdown Horticultural Society
On Saturday 5th August the Training Band appeared as the musical entertainment at the Churchdown Horticultural Society's Annual Show. The Training Band played their usual high standard entertaining the public as they sat enjoying a drink following their wander around the various exhibits. The theme tune to 'Ground Force' had the audience looking over their shoulders for Alan Titchmarsh but sadly he was not to be found! As well as Ground Force the Training Band played two half hour programmes including several recent favourites such as 'Three Celtic dances', 'Wallace and Gromit', and 'Band Power'.

AGM & Concert

Wednesday 5th April saw the band return to Tewkesbury Town Hall for our Annual General Meeting. The evening started with a wonderful concert by our Training Band. Understrength due to holidays, the bands still sounded fantastic. They opened with an impressive march by Ivor Hounder called Band Power. The Beginner Band then showed their talents with a performance of the first two movements of Dave Chapman's Toy Shop Suite - 1. The Soldier's March and 2. The Music Box. The Intermediate Band then returned to a piece that they played a few years ago when there were much fewer members, Take It Fast! from Andre Wagnein's Take It Easy. The Beginner Band then played Rainbow Rock before the Intermediate Band entertained the crowds with the popular tune from the Wallace and Gromit films. They then concluded the concert with a fine rendition of The Young Amadeus in honour of this year's 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth.

During the concert we were pleased to present three more certificate for members who had taken the Associated Board of the Royal School of Music graded examinations in performance. Lucy Windsor did very well to gain a merit in her very first exam, taking grade one Bb Cornet. Her sister Grace also gained a merit in her Grade Four Bb Cornet Exam. Finally, young Hannah Norman gained a distinction in her grade one Euphonium exam. Well done to you all.

The meeting then followed and was full of positive comments despite the past year being a difficult one for the band. The outcome of the comments is that the future certainly looks strong for Tewkesbury Town Band. We welcome back on to the band committee Dave Dron after many years and also Jenny Norman for her first time!

 

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