Okay. First, I do not intend this to turn people against any particular individual or band, nor am I going to mention the names of any individuals or the band involved, but I’m so outraged about this I feel I have to say something. Anyone who knows me will probably know anyway but please post no details, for the reasons above. I have always known this to be a fair forum where conflicting views can be aired and discussed without venom and I am trying to be as fair as I can on all concerned. Mods please let me know if I've crossed any lines. Whit Friday is fast approaching, and bands across the country are warming up for it. Band X are no exception, but being a junior/non contesting band they’ve not enough to turn out a full band, they get together with another band with whom they share a conductor, to turn out a full team for whit Friday and save on costs. Inevitably, some players would have to miss out, as there were more than the requisite full band when both bands were put together. However some of the players dropped seems a little unfair. One of them was someone very close to me, who has taken her own action and resigned. As that situation is now resolved, I will not dwell on it as any bad feeling remaining there from me is purely on a personal level and has no place here. But one, I feel has been treated horribly badly. There’s a lad, on Euphonium in band X, who’s in his early/mid thirties, if my memory serves me correctly. When he was 15-16-ish and in his junior days, he was tipped to be a top-notch player, until he had a car crash. Is injuries were severe enough to prevent him ever walking again, due to head and spinal injuries, and left him with only one lung, and that in very poor shape. Despite this, he still turns in at band X every week in his wheelchair, practices his parts every day and tries his level best, and his parents ferry him around in the car to get him to jobs. His injuries will never fully heal, so for him he’s at the top of his game. He struggles with tricky stuff, but he always tries, and at junior level, surely that’s what it’s about. Notwithstanding the fact that aside from his friends, his Euphonium is just about all that the boy has left to cling onto. The conductor also rang him in midweek and told him he wasn’t playing, as the other band already had two Euphs. Again, if this was solely for musical/contest reasons, this could be understood and was not in itself completely heartless…. …except that said conductor is a Euphonium player himself, and has being going to this lad’s house, to TEACH him the contest march that he was supposed to be playing on whit Friday. And, not just recently, for months previously. You can appreciate why I find this situation completely unacceptable when this lad puts more effort in just getting to band every week than most of us do preparing for an area championships, has done his level best to get the piece up and then gets a kick in the teeth. When faced with that sort of commitment, if the stick was in my hand, his name would have been the first to hit the sheet, just because he’d EARNED it. At every level, being in banding has, for me, never been about the winning. At my first time watching on whit Friday I saw a junior school band go past, who must have numbered seventy or eighty, playing Slaidburn. Or about half of them were at least. The rest were shaking tambourines, hitting side drums etc or just carrying cornets and miming. But they were all obviously delighted to be there and visibly swelled with pride as the people cheered them down the street in Delph. They had as much right to be there as much as the national champions. I saw a fourteen-year-old blind boy being guided by his shoulders in the Marching competition at the New Zealand national championships, playing his part from memory, just because he was proud to be part of the band and wanted to do his bit. And given his chance, I know for a fact he did not incur one penalty point against his band. Win or lose, every last player at any contest, from principal cornet of the winners, to fourth percussion with the last placed band who only has three cymbal clashes and a bass drum roll in the whole piece, shares the honour of taking part. When taking part and the joy of doing our bit for our bandmates ceases to be the main reason we are in our respective bands in the first place, then what joy or satisfaction can any of us take from it?