1929 Belle Vue Presented Brighouse & Rastrick presentation cornet discovered

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by shawneuph, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. shawneuph

    shawneuph Supporting Member

    While having a sort out this week I found a late 1920`s highly decorated Higham Bb cornet which on closer inspection was found to be engraved with the details Won at the July 1929 Belle Vue contest. After a bit of research I found that the contest was won by the Brighouse and Rastrick Band playing Oliver Cromwell and conducted by Fred Berry. It doesn`t necessarily follow that the winning band received the cornet however the Brighouse archive shows that as well as winning the contest they also won a cornet, I therefore am nearly 100% certain that this is the very cornet.
    Please see the details below taken from Brighouse`s web site

    The Band’s first “big break” came in 1929 when, conducted by the legendary Fred Berry, they not only came first at the July Contest but went on to win the Belle Vue contest later that year as well, beating all of the “big bands” of the era. This was truly the start of B&R’s rise to fame, a rise that commenced some 48 years after they were founded in 1881 and a rise that has seen them at the very top of their game for some 84 years so far.

    B&R went on to win the September Belle Vue contest again for three years running in 1932-33-34 conducted by their professional conductor, the great William Halliwell. As a result of winning the contest for three years in succession the Band won the Sunday Chronicle Cup outright and this is part of the Band’s archive collection today. Barred from competing in 1935 after completing the triple they returned in 1936, winning yet again. B&R in 1929

    It is interesting that only one other band (Batley Old Band in 1890) had ever managed to win both the July Contest and the September Belle Vue Contests in the same year prior to B&R achieving this in 1929.

    Records show that the Band was presented with a trophy for winning the July Contest which they held for a year and then had to return but also received several other items which they kept. Reading from the record books this included £20 in cash, a “trombone value 18 guineas”, a “cornet value 14 guineas” and a single medal made of silver and highly inscribed. The Band were also invited to perform on the “wireless” by the BBC and they received a £10 fee for agreeing to do this.

    The Brighouse Echo records that ……”they arrived back home around midnight which militated against any widespread reception by the townspeople. However they were given a great congratulatory welcome at Crow Nest Park, Dewsbury on Sunday where they played to very large assemblies, in the afternoon and evening”.

    Putting the instrument on Ebay later this week .
  2. shawneuph

    shawneuph Supporting Member

    Any one have details of who the principle cornet of the band might have been when they won the 1929 July Belle Vue contest ?
  3. Adamskied

    Adamskied Member

    Dont you think they might want it back lol
  4. shawneuph

    shawneuph Supporting Member

    Hi Adam, I emailed them earlier today with the details
  5. Adamskied

    Adamskied Member

    Now not many people would have done that.
  6. simonium

    simonium Member

    There's a wonderful First Brass / Briggus news story brewing I fancy.
  7. ghost

    ghost Member

    Well, it may well have been Fred Roberts as I know he was Principal of Brighouse at around that time for the next couple of decades - and this is possibly substantiated in the book The modern Brass Band 1930's to the New Millennium by Roy Newsome on Page 148. Fred Roberts was Derek Garside's tutor and himself a cornet player of distinction. So, there is a name to start off the research. I am sure the archives at Brighouse would be able to shed light on this.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2013
  8. Garibaldy

    Garibaldy New Member

    Shawn did indeed e-mail us details, for which we thank him.

    Having done some further research, though, the team is confident that the cornet in question was actually awarded to one of the lower placed bands, rather than to B&R - probably the 3rd, 4th or 5th placed band.

    In the frame that day were:

    2nd: (the now defunct?) Callender's Cable Works Band
    3rd: Pleasley Colliery Band
    4th: Dove Holes Public Band
    5th: Baxendale's Works Band (now also defunct?)

    Given it's Belle Vue connections, it's certainly an interesting discovery, though. An interesting exhibit for the Brass Band Archive, maybe?
  9. classicbrass

    classicbrass Member

    Baxendales - My maternal grandfather used to work for them as a glass cutter. They were based near where the new Co-op bank HQ is being built in Manchester . As far as I can remember they closed their doors in the sixties.
  10. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Callender's disbanded in 1961. Baxendale's was later known as "Denton Original", and survived until 1993. The current Denton band was originally the B band of that band - it's possible that that band may have some info.
  11. Garibaldy

    Garibaldy New Member

    The guardian of the archive has duly been consulted.
    The Principal for the July contest would either have been Frank Haigh or William Swingler - with Frank Haigh the most likely as he played Principal at the September contest according to the programme.
    Fred Roberts joined B&R a year later in 1930 and was principal from 1930 to 1933 and then again from 1935 -1947.
    In 1934 he left B&R and went to Munn & Feltons, and so missed out on the gold medal presented to the bandsmen that played at and won the hatrick of Belle Vue contests in 1932-33-34.
  12. Ianroberts

    Ianroberts Well-Known Member

    where was it found though ? having a sort out isn't too precise ! just curious
  13. Garibaldy

    Garibaldy New Member

    Minutes from the B&R committee meeting from July 1929 show a trombone was won at Belle Vue that year. It was a Besson - which it was decided would be traded as the band had greater need of a new tenor horn. It was a case of 'when needs must' in those days. We will now have to check the minutes from the following month - to see if there is any record of an irate solo trombone player storming out of reherasal and never coming back! :)
  14. shawneuph

    shawneuph Supporting Member

    Thanks for all the replies, as we say in the current ebay listing for this item we have been unable to determine which band was awarded this cornet, unfortunately the brass band archive do not have a programme for the 1929 July contest, the programme almost certainly would give the make of cornet awarded to the winning band, in this case Brighouse. It is quite likley that more than one cornet was awarded to more than one of the prize winners at this contest and these instruments would have been from provided by different manufacturers of the time ie Higham, Boosey, Besson & Co, etc. I have seen programmes from other Belle Vue contests which do show the makes of cornets/instruments awarded with the prizes. Does anyone have a 1929 July contest programme ? As for how the instrument turned up I really can not be sure, over the years we have undertaken a number of band room clearances of unwanted or worn out instruments, most of which get stock piled in our warehouse either for spare parts or to be sold on, whilist looking for a particular spare part recently I came across this instrument.