Newtongrange and Dalmellington’s principal cornet shine at Spring Festival

Sunday 12 May 2024

With the sun beaming down on a basking Blackpool, the glorious weather was matched only by the mellifluous sounds of brass emanating from three halls inside the Winter Gardens yesterday.

At the 102nd British Open Spring Festival Championships, the Opera House, the Pavilion and the Spanish Hall hosted the Grand Shield, the Senior Cup and the Senior Trophy qualifying contests respectively.

Fifty-seven bands took part in this annual springfest, all vying to climb the ladder to eventually reach the British Open Championships. Five Scottish bands took part – Dalmellington (Andrew Duncan), Kingdom Brass (Thomas Wyss) and Kirkintilloch (Hedley Benson) playing in the Senior Cup and Newtongrange Silver (Anne Crookston) and Unison Kinneil (Raymond Tennant) competing in the Senior Trophy.

At the end of the day it was congratulations to Newtongrange on being the highest placed Scottish band in the overall event, achieving the runner-up spot in the Senior Trophy and thereby getting promoted to the Senior Cup next year.

Congratulations also to Rebecca Wilson Paterson (below), principal cornet of Dalmellington, on winning the best instrumentalist prize in the Senior Cup and helping the band to sixth place. Kingdom Brass was placed 12th and Kirkintilloch 15th in the same contest.

Sadly it was not to be Unison Kinneil’s day. Their 16th place out of 17 bands in the Senior Trophy means they will not be taking part in next year’s festival.

There was no Scottish representation in the Grand Shield this year.

The full results of the day are:

Grand Shield

Test-Piece: A Brussels Requiem (Bert Appermont)
Adjudicators: Morgan Griffiths & Lynda Nicholson

1. Oldham Band (Lees) (John Collins)
2. Carlton Main Frickley Colliery (Allan Withington)
3. Rothwell Temperance (David Roberts)
4. Friary Brass (Nigel Taken)
5. NASUWT Riverside (Prof Nicholas Childs)
6. Desford Colliery (Ian Porthouse)
7. Skelmanthorpe (Jonathan Bates)
8. Rainford (Sarah Groarke-Booth)
9. Camborne Town (Gareth Churcher)
10. GUS (Dr David Thornton)
11. Redbridge (Chris Bearman)
12. City of Bradford (Matthew Ryan)
13. Wingates (Martin Heartfield)
14. St Dennis Silver (Darren R Hawken)
15. Fishburn (Duncan Beckley)
16. EverReady (Russell Gray)
17. Milnrow (Lee Skipsey)
18. Ratby Co-operative (Chris Jeans)
19. Llwydcoed (Joshua Ruck)
20. City of Hull (Dean Jones)

The top two bands progress to the British Open Championships. The bottom four bands are relegated to the Senior Cup.

Senior Cup

Test Piece: The New Jerusalem (Philip Wilby)
Adjudicators: Alan Morrison & Andrea Price

1. Amersham (Paul Fisher)
2. Wantage Silver (Chris King)
3. Stannington Brass (Sam Fisher)
4. Ashton-under-Lyne (Martyn Evans)

5. Thundersley Brass (Melvin White)
6. Dalmellington (Andrew Duncan)
7. Elland Silver (Brett Baker)
8. Pemberton Old Wigan DW (Ryan Watkins)
9. Unite the Union (Jonathan Beatty)
10. Shepherd Group (Richard Wilton)
11. City of Cardiff (Melingriffith) (Christopher Bond)
12. Kingdom Brass (Thomas Wyss)
13. Derwent Brass (Jack Capstaff)
14. Tylorstown (Robert Westacott)
15. Kirkintilloch (Hedley Benson)
16. Verwood Concert (Kevin Smith)
17. Acceler8 (Jef Sparkes)
18. Boarshurst Silver (Jamie Prophet)
19. Brass Band of Central England (Steve Cooper)
20. Roche Brass (Keith Maxwell)

The top four bands are promoted to the Grand Shield and the bottom four bands are relegated to the Senior Trophy.

Best instrumentalist: Rebecca Wilson Paterson, principal cornet, Dalmellington

Senior Trophy

Test Piece: Journey to the Centre of the Earth (Peter Graham)
Adjudicators: Helen Douthwaite-Teasdale & John Doyle

1. Ebbw Valley Brass (Gareth Ritter)
2. Newtongrange Silver (Anne Crookston)
3. Haverhill Silver (Paul Filby)
4. Marsden Silver (Andrew Lofthouse)
5. Tongwynlais Temperance (Owen Farr)
6. Roberts Bakery (Mike Jones)
7. Pontardulais Town (Matthew Jenkins)
8. Enderby (Gareth Brindle)
9. Eccles Borough (Mareika Gray)
10. East London Brass (Jayne Murrill)
11. Blackburn & Darwen (Daniel Thomas)
12. Woodfalls (Paul Holland)
13. Longridge (Mark Peacock)
14. Parc & Dare (Dewi Griffiths)
15. Yorkshire Imperial (Garry Hallas)
16. Unison Kinneil (Raymond Tennant)
17. Easington Colliery (Michael Fowles)

The top four bands are promoted to the Senior Cup.


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