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Local resident gifts instrument

A welcome boost to the band’s instrument stock has resulted, with the kind donation of a cornet.

The instrument previously belonged to Harry Sargant, whose father John now lives in Lyme Regis. Harry grew up in Marlborough and played the cornet through his school years, playing with several groups including Swindon Young Musicians.

John presented the instrument to the band before a recent rehearsal. It was warmly welcomed by Musical Director John Powell

MD John Powell (left) accepts the cornet from John Sargant

MD John Powell (left) accepts the cornet from John Sargant

who commented, ‘we are very grateful to Mr Sargant for thinking of us. We have a thriving Training Band with several players coming through to the main band. I can assure him that the instrument will be put to very good use!’

Our engagement list for the coming season has now been published, beginning with the ‘Blessing of the Boats’ on 25th May. We will also be contributing to Lyme’s D-Day celebrations on Sunday 8th June and their ever-popular ‘Music by the Sea’ Tuesday evening concerts on Marine Parade will run from 10th June until the end of August.

All our engagements for the year are listed on the website.

 

A Season of Christmas Carols

IMG_0658 (800x418)Christmas has again proved to be the busiest time of the year for the band. Since early December, the band has been entertaining, not only in Lyme but further afield. Residents sang along with their carols at three residential homes and concerts were given at All Saints and Musbury village halls. The band also supported Axminster’s Festive Friday.

Our Annual Christmas Concert was free this year and was very well attended. It featured awards to band members Catherine Lancaster, Kathy Smith and Grace. Stuart Broom presented the Gordon Broom Memorial Shield to John Case, the band’s librarian. This was the

Award Winners

Award Winners

fifth time John has won the award, a measure of the great support he has given over many years to the members. Gordon Broom, Stuart’s father, was a contemporary of John’s in the original Lyme Band.

Confident performances were given by the Training Band, including the theme from ‘Skyfall’. Just how much progress the Training Band has made under the direction of Nikki Herbert was clear by the appreciative applause of the audience. The band is grateful to all who supported the concert in any way, particularly to its sponsor, A J Wakely.

Christmas shoppers were entertained with carols both at Seaton Tesco’s and in Broad Street, Lyme Regis. Unfortunately, Lyme Regis Rotary’s carols around the tree was cancelled because of poor weather. Band Secretary Adrian Pearson commented, ‘this time of year is always full of engagements. We were particularly delighted by the strong support of the local community at our Annual Christmas Concert, in response to our free ticket offer’.  

Following a short break, the band will welcome new members from the Training Band. They will be getting to grips with new music which will carry them through to the next summer season.IMG_0659 (800x600)

It only remains for the band to wish all its supporters a very Happy Christmas and prosperous New Year in 2014!

CHRISTMAS GALLERY

 

All Saints headgear

All Saints headgear

Horn Section

Horn Section

Mince Pie break: Shire House

Mince Pie break: Shire House

More mince pies: Tesco's

More mince pies: Tesco’s

Woody takes part!

Woody takes part!

Foyer, Tesco's Seaton

Foyer, Tesco’s Seaton

Collection time

Collection time

Christmas Concert: Chairman's solo

Christmas Concert: Chairman’s solo

Christmas Concert: Finale

Christmas Concert: Finale

Christmas Eve: Broad Street, Lyme

Christmas Eve: Broad Street, Lyme

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve

Jim Sweetland: Founder Member

With the sad and unexpected passing of Jim Sweetland, the band has lost a true stalwart and another founder member.

When the band was founded in 1981 using a donation from the filming of ‘The French Lieutenant’s Woman’, Jim was there from the beginning, alongside Ian North, Malcolm Street and Musical Director Joe O’Donnell, all of whom are sadly no longer with us.

Jim held a variety of positions within the band, demonstrating his whole-hearted commitment over many years. He taught many youngsters to play, ensuring that there were always new recruits coming through.

Band member Roger Grose commented, ‘it was Jim who taught my son Daniel to play. When Dan was up to standard,

A Proud Life Member

A Proud Life Member

he joined the main band and I would chauffeur him around to all the engagements. In the end, I decided to join the band as well and found myself sat next to Jim. He was always a great encourager to young and old alike’.

When Jim decided to retire from playing in 2007, the band awarded him a much deserved  Life Membership. Yet despite this, Jim did not lose contact with the band. In 2008, he proved a very able compere for the band’s Annual Christmas Concert at the Woodmead Halls. In emergencies or because of holidays, he was more than willing to come along and conduct.

More than once on Christmas Eve, when the band was playing carols in Broad Street, Jim stepped out of the crowd at Musical Director John Powell’s invitation to take the baton again.

Jim’s contribution to the band was immense and his enthusiasm, interest and support will be greatly missed. We extend our deepest sympathy to Daphne, his wife, to his daughter Jan and to the whole family.

1982 - Founder Members Jim: back row 2nd from left

1982 – Founder Members
Jim: back row 2nd from left

Jim & Ian North 1982

Jim & Ian North 1982

Life Membership presented by Chairman Val Mahoney

Life Membership presented by Chairman Val Mahoney

With Award Winners: Christmas 2008

With Award Winners: Christmas 2008

Jim, Gilly Warr & Stuart Broome: Christmas 2008

Jim, Gilly Warr & Stuart Broome: Christmas 2008

MD’s Special Birthday

There was a pleasant surprise for the band’s Musical Director John Powell at the rehearsal on 24th September. During the break, the band suddenly struck up ‘Happy Birthday’ and the Secretary, Val Mahoney appeared with an appropriate cake. Showing a picture of John addressing the crowds during a ‘Music by the Sea’ concert in Lyme Regis, the cake was duly shared out to band members. John did not disclose his significant age in public but there was a clue on the cake!

Two church services recently saw the end of the band’s summer season. The first marked the end of Colyton Carnival and due to inclement weather, had to be held inside the church, instead of on the green. Playing for Axminster Methodist Church’s harvest festival has also become a regular engagement and once again the band provided accompaniment for the much-loved harvest hymns. Following the service, band members enjoyed an excellent cooked lunch.

Practices have now begun for the band’s Christmas Concert on FRIDAY 13TH DECEMBER at the Woodmead Halls. Keep this date free and watch out for ticket details!

 

End of Another Successful Summer Season

‘Auld Lang Syne’ echoed across Marine Parade last week, marking the end of another very successful season of summer concerts for the band, which this year had begun on 18th June.

With the weather greatly improved on last year, they regularly entertained large and appreciative crowds. Just one Tuesday concert was cancelled because of rain, leaving a total of seventeen performances. As a result of the good weather, collections have been very encouraging and will help provide the band with financial security through the winter months.

Joining in!

Joining in!

Once again, a popular feature was the regular children’s spot, when youngsters were invited to come forward and join the band to play a range of percussion instruments. Several players on holiday in Lyme Regis joined the band for their regular concerts. They included brothers David and Richard Thomas, and young German trombonist Conrad Groezinger. Another holidaymaker was Mark Peacock, Associate Conductor of the famous Fairey Band, who conducted the band in a cameo appearance.

Lyme Regis resident Nigel Ball, a regular concert attender, stepped forward to express the thanks of not only those present, but of the people of Lyme Regis, who appreciated the important role the band played in the local community. The audience then linked arms for the singing of ‘Auld Lang Syne’, an appropriate close to another successful season.

Musical Director John Powell expressed thanks to all who had supported the band throughout the summer and presented thank-you gifts to the regular collectors. In thanking the audience for their support, he commented, ‘this has been a memorable summer season for us. We now return to the practice room and begin preparation for our Christmas Concert on Friday 13th December at the Woodmead Halls’.

                      

                         SNAPSHOTS OF SUMMER 2013

 

   

The late George Ward

Band members were recently saddened to learn of the death of cornet player George Ward

George had been associated with the band since the early 1990′s, under former conductor, the late Pat Perry. He played front row cornet and latterly, 3rd cornet.

George performing jazz

George performing jazz

But his musical abilities were not just confined to brass banding. He was very well known in the local area as an accomplished jazz trumpet player, performing with such groups as the Coly River Jazz Band and the Three Counties Swing Band.

George suffered failing health over the last few months, although he continued to support the band for as long as he could. He was a friendly and kindly man who clearly enjoyed his music-making and communicated it to others.

The band were represented at his funeral service on August 18th. He will be greatly missed and we extend our sympathy to his family.

Guest Conductor’s Thanks

Following Mark Peacock’s concert visit last week, he writes:

“Dear Lyme Regis Town Band,
Many thanks for giving me the opportunity to meet, conduct and play
percussion with you during our recent visit to Lyme Regis. It was a
lovely evening and so good to hear a brass band playing in such a2013-08-13 001 2013-08-13 003 (800x681)
fantastic venue to such an appreciative audience.
I hope to see you again in September/December when Fairey’s come down
to Beaminster.
Thanks again and best wishes to everyone at the band.
Mark Peacock”

The band really enjoyed meeting and working with Mark. Our thanks and best wishes to him and his family.

For further information on the Fairey’s September 22nd concert in Beaminster, please contact A. Greenham on 01308 862493, or email tonyandmarg@ aol.com.

A Testimonial for the Band (and John Warr!)

After the Band’s latest ‘Music by the Sea’ concert on Tuesday 13th August, (see below), we received the following email:

“I would just like to say how much we enjoyed the Band’s performance on the prom on Tuesday night. We missed the first part but heard a wonderful piece featuring the Euphonium as we walked through the gardens (about 8.10pm). We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Lyme and we always make sure we get to listen to the band. I will say that I thought this

John Warr in action

John Warr in action

year’s programme was the best we’ve ever heard with a range of pieces that seemed to have a very broad appeal with a great sound that filled the bay (we listened to quite a lot from the end of the Cobb).

Please pass our appreciation to the rest of your hard working colleagues,

Regards

Anne”

Anne is a brass band player from Colchester who plays for the Boxted Methodist Silver Band. She asked the name of the euphonium solo so that she could recommend it to her band and we duly obliged. The piece in question was ‘Romance and Rondo’ by Darrol Barry and it was played by our solo euphonium player, John Warr (pictured).

It is always a pleasure to receive comments like this and we will certainly pass them on to band members. If you’ve not yet heard the band this summer, there are only three opportunities left – Tuesdays 20th and 27th August at 8 p.m. and Sunday 25th at 2.30 p.m.

 

 

Band’s Surprise Celebrity Conductor!

There was a surprise for band members during last week’s ‘Music by the Sea’ concert on Marine Parade, when a holidaymaker stepped out of the audience to take over the conductor’s baton.

The volunteer was no amateur, but Mark Peacock, who was staying in the area with his family. Mark is currently the Musical Director of the Longridge Band in Lancashire, as well as Associate Conductor of the famous Fairey Band,    wSAM_1346 (800x653)ho are currently ranked 8th in the world. He is also a contest adjudicator and a lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University.

Mark conducted the band for the march ‘Punchinello’ and later gamely took part with the rest of his family, together with children from the audience, in playing percussion accompaniment to one of Abba’s greatest hits ‘Ring Ring’. Lyme Band’s Musical Director John Powell commented, ‘we were delighted and privileged that Mark took time out, not only to come and listen to our concert, but also for agreeing to conduct. Our band members really enjoyed the experience’.

The world-famous Fairey Band, based in Cheshire, are no strangers to Dorset. They have a strong local following and have given regular concerts at St Mary’s Church in Beaminster for many years, always attracting large audiences. Their next visit is on 22nd September, followed by a pre-Christmas concert on 15th December.

This has again been a successful summer for the Lyme band. Their summer season is now drawing to a close, with two Tuesday night concerts remaining and a Sunday afternoon concert on 25th August, starting at 2.30.

                                              PHOTO GALLERY (Click on each to enlarge)

 

Clog Dancing and Moon Rising!

The largest audience this season enjoyed some unusual entertainment before and after last Tuesday evening’s ‘Music by the Sea’ concert on Marine Parade. A clog dancing group visiting from South East Derbyshire provided lively music and dance and no doubt for many of those watching, this was their first experience of this skill.

The band’s concert season is now just over halfway through and the evenings are beginning to draw in. It always feels a privilege to play at such a 2013-07-23 19.28.26 (800x504)wonderful venue and to notice the often breathtaking views from our playing position, particularly towards Golden Cap, West Bay and around to Weymouth and Portland. By the end of last Tuesday’s concert, the moon was rising over Portland, which made a striking picture. In a few short weeks time, it will be dark by the end of our concerts at a quarter past nine and the moon will be beautifully reflected across Lyme Bay. The sight of moonlight rippling across the sea really has to be experienced.

So you still have a chance to join us on a Tuesday evening. Come and be entertained by the band’s music in undoubtedly one of nature’s best settings!

 

               THE DELIGHTS OF MARINE PARADE, LYME REGIS!