Crumbs…it’s birthday time.

One thing we are good at in Lyme Regis Town Band is eating cake, especially when it’s someone’s birthday. This time it was John’s turn to be birthday boy – he’s seen here celebrating with Kathy and a cuppa!
The cakes were delicious and made by Gilly – it’s not just horn playing she’s good at.
We also managed a bit of practice in preparation for our first appearance this year when we are accompanying the hymns at the RNLI Blessing the Boats Ceremony at the Lifeboat Station in Lyme Regis on Sunday, 22nd May.
This will be followed shortly by the Picnic in the Park event, being organised by Alan Vian, when we will be playing on top of the shelters from 4.00 pm until 4.45 pm. We are very much looking forward to both occasions as it will be nice to get out there, playing in public once again.

We said “Cheese”

Last night after a number of thwarted attempts we finally managed to have our professional photograph taken of the band. There were one or two unavoidable absences but everyone else turned up suitably suited and booted and after a lot of shuffling around we got the job done. We are extremely grateful to Maisie Hill, not only for her professional skills but also for her patience in sorting us all out which was no mean task. We now look forward to seeing the end result which will eventually feature on our website and on other publicity material. It will be interesting to see if we can spot the band member who had to stand on a bucket to keep the line straight…Gilly

March update from our secretary

Last night at practice we had a visit from a VIP.  David, our MD, and his lovely wife, Rachel, have just become parents to a beautiful baby girl, and we had our first glimpse of her last night.  The baby was surrounded by band members and some even enjoyed a cuddle.  At just over a week old she must be our youngest recruit and we hope to see more of her soon.

Talking of new recruits we also welcomed Jay who is about to join our training band as an adult learner.  He sat in and listened to our practice, which was a real mixed bag, as we played some pieces we know well and others which were new pieces we are just learning.  However he was not put off and we are looking forward to seeing him again next week.  We’ve also learned of another potential trainee – a youngster who is keen to learn the cornet – so if anyone is thinking of learning to play a brass instrument now would be a good time to get in touch as it’s good to have company when you start to learn.  It was encouraging for Jay to see that we have five members of our training band, including one adult, who now sit in with the main band on a regular basis.

We were very pleased to have back with us our two bass players who have returned to practice following a break for health reasons.  It made such a difference to have them back on the bass line.

We’ve now got our heads down and our shoulders to the wheel preparing a range of pieces for the busy summer season ahead.  Our first engagement is taking part in the Blessing the Boats Ceremony for the RNLI which is taking place at the Lifeboat Station on the afternoon of Sunday, 22nd May.

Between now and then we have arranged for a band photograph in full uniform which should be fun – a bit like the old school photo when you need everyone looking smart, facing the same way and no comedians mucking up the shot.  We will share the outcome in due course… Gilly

AGM time

Last night the band held our AGM at Woodmead Halls, chaired by our President, Mr Owen Lovell. The meeting was well attended by band members and we were also joined by our two Trustees, John Evans and Derek Hallett.

During the meeting Officers and Committee members were appointed for the ensuing year, with Ellis Holt taking over as Chairman. Ellis will also continue as Conductor and Musical Director for the Training Band.

David Tozer remains as Musical Director for the main band and he was also the recipient of The Gordon Broom Award, which was presented to him (left) by Stuart Broom on behalf of the Broom family. Stuart paid tribute to David’s efforts in maintaining band morale during the lockdown. Reference was made to the fact that a lot of organisations struggled to keep going during this period, with some subsequently disbanding and he congratulated the band on continuing to operate during the disruption. Gordon Broom was Stuart’s father and was a founder member of the band. His family donated the shield in his memory and each year band members award it to the person who they feel has contributed the most to the band.

The band has also recently purchased a new cornet. It will be played by Kathy Smith, our principal cornet player. The photo (right) shows Kathy with the new instrument being handed to her by our President, Owen Lovell.

Owen brought the AGM to a close by wishing the band well hopeful that things will start to return to normal.

To this end the committee is now hard at work planning a full programme of concerts and other events for the forthcoming year.

New Year plans…

Good news at last… We are returning to practices on Tuesday (18th) after an extended break over the Christmas and New Year period due to the virus. Only those who feel comfortable to do so will be there and we will be taking every precaution to keep everyone safe. It will be great to get back together and to get into some sort of normal routine.
We are also going ahead with our AGM which is scheduled for Tuesday, 1st February at 7.45 pm at Woodmead Halls. We were planning to take
a full band photograph in uniform, prior to the AGM, which would have been fun but we have decided to postpone this until all band members
are available.
We’ve just held our first committee meeting of the year during which we started to look at our engagement list for the forthcoming year. The
highlight of our year has to be our open air concerts on Marine Parade during the summer months but we are also hoping to fit in some other
events throughout the year. We are hoping that there will be no further disruption to our plans but who knows? In the meantime we will keep
practising and hoping for the best.
If anyone is thinking of taking on a new challenge for the new year why not think about learning to play a brass instrument? We welcome new
players of all ages and abilities and have a thriving training band where you can receive free tuition, use of an instrument and loads of support
and encouragement. Why not pop in and see us any Tuesday evening at Woodmead Halls from 7.30 pm? Gilly

No more music this year

Sadly our Christmas activities have finished earlier than expected. We managed to play at the All Saints Christmas Concert on 8th December and we played carols outside Tesco in Seaton last Saturday but all our other engagements have now been cancelled, due to the spread of the virus. It’s quite understandable given the circumstances but disappointing all the same. However, it’s best to err on the side of caution…
All that remains is for us to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year. We greatly appreciate the support we receive throughout the year and we now look forward to taking part in future events that hopefully will take place in 2022.Gilly

When jumpers met butties

Here we are relaxing at Pebbles Restaurant in Seaton, where we enjoyed delicious bacon butties, before we went to play carols outside Tesco yesterday afternoon. No red waistcoats but plenty of Christmas jumpers this time. Thanks to Anna Crabbe for taking the photographs.

Christmas carols at Seaton

Many thanks to the staff and customers of Tesco in Seaton who gave us such a warm welcome this afternoon. It was a wet and miserable day but we played carols outside the store for about an hour. Thanks to Josh and Annette and Enzo’s mum for collecting on our behalf and thanks to Annette for these photos.

All Saints Christmas Night 2021

We really enjoyed our visit to All Saints last night for their Annual Christmas Concert.  We have been taking part in this event for many years and it’s always good fun.  The programme is very varied and this year it included a violin solo, a reading, a Barbershop Quartet and a Saxophone Group. 

We played several pieces which included two solos – Kathy played solo cornet on “A Winter’s Tale” and Catherine played flugel horn on a new piece for us “The Ashokan Farewell”.  Both solos were played very well and were well received but the most enthusiastic applause was for our trainees, Christian, Jonathan, Josh, Enzo and Orlando, who played three pieces on their own, conducted by their trainer, Ellis.  We also accompanied some carol singing and we attempted to keep up with the audience while they performed their usual energetic version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas” – quite a challenge for David, our MD. 

I think it’s fair to say that a good time was had by all.  We particularly enjoyed the mince pies and mulled wine that was available in the interval. We are grateful to Steve Holt and his team who made sure that everyone was safe with masks worn, doors open and a reduced audience.  We are very much hoping that we will be invited again next year…..

Photos: Justin Migliari. Words: Gilly. Thank you both 

Christmas is round the corner

It’s almost time to get out there and join in the Christmas fun… We have just one more main rehearsal and

Suitably Festive!

then we begin the first of our seasonal engagements starting with a visit to our friends at All Saints, just across the border into Devon, for their Annual Christmas Concert on Wednesday, 8th December. We love taking part in this event which by all accounts is already a sell out as numbers have had to be restricted this year for obvious reasons. As well as the main band, our trainees will be playing a couple of pieces on their own, led by their conductor, Ellis Holt. They have come on in leaps and bounds and we are all looking forward to hearing them and cheering them on.
On Saturday, 11th December we will be playing carols outside Tesco in Seaton, from 2.00 pm. Beforehand we are treating ourselves to bacon butties and hot drinks at Pebbles Restaurant where we are always made most welcome – it’s the nearest we can get to a social event for band members.
Our next outing will be on Sunday, 19th December when we have been invited to play carols at a church service to be held at Weycroft just outside Axminster commencing at 5.00 pm. This is a new event and venue for us and we are pleased to be taking part.
We round off our Christmas with two further events, both in the open air in Broad Street, Lyme Regis. On Thursday, 23rd December we will be joining the Rotary Club (and usually the whole population of Lyme Regis!) for carols around the Christmas Tree at the bottom of town from 7.00 pm. We will then be back under the Christmas Tree for a final carol session on Christmas Eve from 11.00 am, weather permitting.
It’s going to be a busy but very enjoyable time – we are hopeful there will be some photographs to follow. Gilly