Archived Histories of Brass Bands 
    
 
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This page is part of an archive of historical details from existing or defunct brass band websites. This is being maintained to provide a record of this information in the event of a band folding, its website disappearing or other loss of the historical record. Where possible, and appropriate, the information cached will be updated from time to time - and any corrections or updates are welcome.



Godalming Band

In 1937 a group of amateur musicians decided to pool their talents to form a band based in Godalming. There had been a band in the town from about 1844, when the bandmaster was a Mr. Woodnott, but this had long since been disbanded. The first engagement for the new band, which was to become known as the "Godalming and Borough Band" was a march to celebrate the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth. The band later became known as the "Godalming & District Silver Band". Their former president, Harry Coombes, was one of the original founder members. Sadly, Harry died recently.

Thanks to the generosity of the people in and around Godalming, the band has managed to retain its self-supporting status, raising funds locally for instruments, uniforms and music. Each year they have a busy summer schedule playing at fetes, carnivals, bandstands and parks of local towns, and they have for many years participated in the brass band competitions organised in the Southern Counties Amateur Bands Association, as well as national contests. In the Area Qualifying Contest in 1992 they won a place in the National Brass Band Finals (the first time in the band's history!). This National Final was held in October at the Wembley Conference Centre and although the band weren't in the prizes, it was a good day out and they were proud to have qualified. 1992 also saw the production of a new cassette, "Flourish", their first recording for many years, which is available from band members.

At the SCABA 1993 Spring Contest in Brighton and the 1993 Autumn Contest in Folkestone the band were awarded second prizes for their test pieces and in Brighton they won the March Contest. The success was repeated at Folkestone in 1995 with second prizes for both the test piece and hymn contest, and again at Brighton in 1996 with first prizes for both test piece and march. In 2007 the band was again successful, taking away first place with the test piece, best soloist prize and best conductor.

Under the present Musical Director, David Wright, they have given many outstanding concerts and have given first performances of new pieces specially written for them, most significantly 'Mystery Play' by David Lancaster (commissioned with funds provided by Waverley Borough Council), 'Pantheon' by Keith Amos (later selected as a test piece for the 1990 Brass Band Championship) and 'Tempest, Tranquility and Incantation' by Huw Cole.