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Marske Brass Band
Founded in 1875
Round about 1875, a group of young men approached their 'bosses', who were known as the "Quakers" in those days.
Their bosses were Pease and Partners from Darlington and were the owners of the Upleatham Ironstone Mine, they agreed to the formation of a Brass Band, and the Miners Union agreed to the deduction of a penny a week from the miners wage towards the upkeep of the band. The Band was called the Upleatham Mines Band.
When the mines closed down, the band had to vacate the Band room.
In 1937, the North Riding County Council allowed the band to use the local school and yard. The Bands name was changed to the New Marske Band. An account was opened at the Midland Band, Saltburn, to allow the band to get a loan of £100, which was to buy a set of uniforms (25.) One uniform alone today costs well over £150!
The Band decided that they needed their "own" band room. They approached the owners of the Middlesbrough Estate and bought a first World War hut, from what is called the Longbeck Trading Estate. It was a large hut, 90ft long and 25ft wide. It was dismantled and re-erected on an allotment garden site. What a good band room and dance hall it became.
In 1958, the Zetland Estates which owned the allotment site, required the land for house building, so once again, the band was without a practice room. Local businessman and councilor Mr. Ray Jarvis, gave the band the use of a guard room on his aerodrome site for a couple of years, after which the British Legion Ladies section allowed the band to use the "Tithe Barn", which was occupied until the ceiling collapsed.
The Saltburn and Marske Urban District Council was approached in 1966, they said "There is a 2nd World War hut in the council yard, if you take it away, you can have it" They were given planning permission for the erection of the hut in the playing fields area at Marske and set the rent at £15 per year. The Band changed its name to the Marske and District Prize Silver Band.
The playing fields owned by Zetland Estates were given to the council, who formed the Marske Sports and Recreation Association. The Band had to join the association in order to stay on the land. The ownership of the hut was transferred to the MS&RA Committee.
The Band appeared many times during the early 1990's (and still does to this day) in the local press. 1992 was a milestone, as this saw the 'Magnificent Seven' come to the band.... Here is the article that was published about them...
"Teenage brass players are proving quite a match for the more established members of the band. Band director Ray Profuse decided to allow talented young players to swell the band for concerts, but he didn't realise so many of them would make the grade. Lined up all ready to take part in their first concert of the season are the band's new young players, from left to right, Richard Medd (14), Clare Scott (15) Rachael Smith (13) Amanda Thompson (16) James Chisholm (14) Caroline Dick (13) and Kate Chisholm (12).
Another article that also appeared was in aid of the band. The Band were fundraising to try to preserve the 63,000 sheets of manuscript in its 117 year old library. The Band had rebuilt the library and required funds to buy two fireproof doors, some fireproof cabinets and a photocopier, which would allow the band to copy some of the valuable Edwardian arrangements that are now out of print. Other expenditures anticipated during this year were estimated at £1,000 to restore the practice room, £5,500 for a new uniform (compared to the £100 in 1937!!) and £35,000 for new instruments. The Band took part in many fundraising events such as the Marske Gala Day.
In 1993, the band received a £16,000 grant from the Foundation for sports and Art, which enabled the purchase of 15 new instruments (10 Cornets, 2 Tenor Horns, 2 Baritones and 1 Euphonium). The old instruments allowed the reformation of a junior band, with members aged from approximately 8 years upwards, with many never having played a brass instrument before. The Junior Band is run separately from the Senior Band, and all tuition is free.
In March 1999 the band received a lottery grant of £29,986.00. A further £3331.00 was raised through other grants, donations and fundraising events such as raffles held by the band itself. The £33,317.00 was used to purchase the remainder of the new instruments not covered by the Arts Council Grant, including a drum kit and full set of pedal timps and Alun Prest ALCM was commissioned to compose a new piece of music. Entitled "Cleveland Hills", the piece was played at a concert in St Marks Church on 29 November 2000 as celebration of the receipt of the new instruments and music. The event was opened by the Mayor and Mayors of Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council.
The Band name changed to the Marske Brass Band in 1994, as this was the way that the band was referred to locally and in concerts. Difficulties with the MSRA on the large increase in rent resulted in the band leaving the MSRA! A difficult time with practices in the local pubs, and St. Johns Ambulance Building. Re-negotiations with the MSRA allowed the band back into the hut that the band had originally erected.