A happy New Year, one and all, from SBBA and our president, Carrie Boax

Saturday 1 January 2022

As I reflect on another rollercoaster of a year, I cannot help but smile and feel again a sense of pride at the determination and resilience the length and breath of the country as our players and band communities found the strength and true grit to make the most of the obstacles and overcome the heartbreak experienced on the road to recovery in 2021.

The disappointment of not being able to come together at the end of this month for our AGM and the cancellation of many concerts, gala days, festivals and fundraising events which give our brass bands identity in their communities was partially overcome with the delight of being able to have a residential summer course for our three NYBBS bands and hosting a live Scottish Festival of Brass.

Other notable successes in 2021 were the virtual Youth Speaks Roadshow, the launch of our SBBA Speaks podcast and establishing our SBBA Wellbeing Charter. There was also the milestone of the Borders Entertainment Contest in November, the first brass band competition in Scotland since March 2020.

There has been one constant throughout, however. Whether in Strathallan in August, Cheltenham in September, London in October or Langholm or Perth in November, all the effort has been worth it to stir emotions and hear the sound of a live brass band fill concert halls, ringing loud and proud.

It reminds me of all that is great about being part of the brass band movement. My only wish was that those we have lost since the start of the pandemic were still here to hear it too.

Whilst we are still uncertain of what 2022 will bring, I truly believe we are in a strong position to ensure we can move forward and keep connected, whether virtually or in person, with those with whom we share a passion for making music and promoting our movement whenever we can.

Please remember not only to connect with one another, but also keep connected with the SBBA as the calls and correspondence we receive from you all keep us positive and help not only myself, but our amazing committee members and volunteers who continue to work behind the scenes on your behalf.

May I take this opportunity, on behalf of my own family and everyone at SBBA, to wish you and your families a safe, healthy and happy New Year and hope that there will be many opportunities to come together and make live music in 2022.

All my love and warmest wishes,



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Email Nigel Martin: sbbapr@gmail.com