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Pendeen Silver Band
Pendeen Band was first formed in 1892 and was one of 40,000 then in existence. Over the years this figure has been considerably reduced and is today more like 15,000.
Locally, there were drill halls in Newbridge and St. Buryan, which both had bands. In 1892 the foundation stone of Carnyorth (Board) School was laid. Soon after on 10th.January 1893, the Wheal Owles disaster happened. Pendeen church started an organ fund, for like St.Just, the hymns and psalms were accompanied by strings and woodwind. In the area, there were at least five bands. Pendeen was then classed as a part of St. Just and rarely had separate recognition.
Tea treats were the highlight of the year and the “Cornish Telegraph” of 20thJune 1892 records:- "On Midsummer Day the Weslyan Sunday School, led by the band of the RifleVolunteers, followed by the Free Church School, cheered everybody with the strains of the band, lately formed under the leadership of Mr. Thomas H. Andrewartha, which appeared in public for the very first time. There was, of course the usual ‘Tea’."
The following year the Rev. F. J. Horsefield came to Pendeen from Manchester, for a yearand wrote ‘A Life in a Cornish Village’ and on page 82 we read. "Dissenters have their Sunday School parades accompanied by various bands, followed by tea parties on a large scale. On Midsummer Day the Church people hold their festival with the schoolchildren perambulating the district to the music of two brass bands, afterwards having buns and tea in a field opposite the Church – (fun, bonfires and gunpowder explosions) The hills resounded to the music produced by the bands".
Pendeen Band played for the non-conformists. The organist at Carnyorth Free Church, Mr. J. H. Ellis, known locally as ‘Boy Jim Henney’, got the Pendeen band well under way in 1892.
The band has occupied a variety of band rooms including a barn, an old smithy, Charlotte Warren's kitchen in Trewellard (whose great-grandson, Jonathan Kevern on Eb Bass, currently plays with the band), and the local Church Schoolrooms.
Later, a room with a chequered history in St. John's Terrace, Pendeen, was purchased, which the band vacated when better accomodation was offered by the Geevor Mine management. When the mine was closed, the band came under the threat of eviction, but 'squatted' in this Geevor accommodation until the village playing field Trustees offered a building plot on a corner of their field.
Planning permission was sought and granted and a purpose built band room, which the band own, was built. Many thanks must be extended to all the local people who wrote so many letters of support and organised a well-subscribed petition supporting the band room project.
Thanks are also due to the Trustees of Trewellard Chapel, St. John's Ambulance, Pendeen and the Pendeen W.I., for their offer of temporary accommodation, if the band was evicted from Geevor before the band room was finished.
The new building was completed and the opening ceremony performed, by Mrs.H.Derrington, in September 1995. Mrs.Derrington, being a Trustee of both the playing field and the band, played an invaluable part in fundraising for the project.