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.
Portishead Town Band
The band formally started in 1968, although a number of the founder members, including current Bass trombonist Eric John had been practicing in an office (Erics!) located in the Portishead Power Station. However in 1968 they became a section of the Central Electricity Generating Board (CEGB) Sports and Social Club practicing at the clubhouse which is now known as Clarence House.
The initial conductor was Bill Blaker, who was the beginning of a Portishead banding dynasty. His son John is still a very active member of the band as both a cornet player and key committee member. A number of other family members have been involved with the band over the years in both playing and supporting roles.
In addition to the Blakers there were a number of other local families including Derrick, Pennell, Bold, Reed and Lench within the ranks. The band were well supported by an active supporter group who helped with the organisation of concerts, craft fairs and other social events to raise money to provide cash towards instruments and uniforms
The band first started contesting in 1972 at the Colston Hall in the area 4th section final. The bands first contest win was just two years later when they came first in the GBBA Annual Contest. The Band remained in the 4th Section until October 2000 when following an appearance at the Royal Albert Hall they were promoted to the 3rd section. The band were next promoted in October 2005 when they went onto compete in the 2nd section until March 2008 which saw a further promotion to the 1st section and finally reaching the championship section in March 2011. The Band has reached the National Finals in Harrogate twice in their history.
Between 1991 and 2004 the band developed and hosted a very successful annual music festival and was a member of the International Federation of Music festivals. This along with the Brass Academy was responsible for the introduction of numerous local children to the world of banding. Two academy members have recently re-joined the band, brother and Sister Chris Plater and Danielle Nash.
The band has played all over the country including the Whit Sunday Marches, Tolpuddle March, Festival of The Sea Saltash and Bristol, Royal London Parks as well as, most if not all bandstands in the South West. They have also visited Portishead twin town Den Dungen on four occasions.
In 2004 we played with the local band Harmone Wilhelmina Den Dungen at the 60th remembrance of Operation Market Garden.
We have been seen on TV and supported Belinda Evans at Bath Rugby Club in front of 10,000 people and many thousands more on Sky TV.
The band were initially known Electricity Club Band as a consequence of their connection to CEGB, changing to Clarence House Band before taking on their current name Portishead Town Band.
The band is not currently contesting and since January 2013 has been slowly rebuilding and have completed a number of engagements in the local area. These have included concerts in April at the Somerset Hall which went down well to an enthusiastic audience. This was followed by a number of other engagements including Bath Park, The Portishead Remembrance parade as well as a rousing Christmas Concert and a round of caroling in the local high street and Gordano Services.