Butlins 2011

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Mr. Stomvi, Jul 16, 2010.

  1. Mr. Stomvi

    Mr. Stomvi Member

    My band - the Central Ohio Brass Band (COBB) won the US NABBA 1st division championship this year and are invited to compete in Butlins 2010 in Jan. None of us have either competed or even been to the contest before so could some of you folks clue me in as to what is the format, how many bands compete usually, strength of bands, what's the weather like that time of year, level of required inebration :) etc., etc.

    Thanks in advance guys
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2010
  2. Mr. Stomvi

    Mr. Stomvi Member

    I meant Butlins 2011. Duh :)
  3. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Butlins is a fantastic contest, that has quickly become my favourite banding event of the year - and I guess from other comments here I'm not the only one. Its held on the East coast of England at a place called Skegness. Just for the record the East coast of England is a bit different to the East Coast of the US :p

    The answer to most of your questions depend on which section you're entered into - the Championship section is held over two days with a contest on each - Saturday is a set test piece, Sunday is an entertainment contest. The other sections play a set test piece on the Saturday.

    Well the town motto for Skegness is 'its bracing' (in other words 'its bl**dy windy here') and its fair to say that January isn't the best time of year to go to the seaside in the UK. The first year I played there I was late for the Saturday morning rehearsal because I couldn't get in my car as every door was frozen shut...

    Errr :oops: probably best if you search here for Butlins threads (there's one for every year) and on YouTube I know there are some videos of peoples antics while on camp.
  4. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    By the way - I've corrected the thread title to 2011 to save any confusion :)
  5. Mr. Stomvi

    Mr. Stomvi Member

    Thanks Ian. I'm guessing we will be competing in the section right below your championship division. I think we will need another year before we are ready to take on Dyke, Cory, Grimey, etc. :) Just kidding of course :)

    How many bands would you say would normally compete in our division ? Where in the 4BarsRest international ranking would they most likely be placed ?

    You are scaring the hell out of me with the weather prediction :) I was hoping to make it over to Richard Smith's place as I play a Smith Watkins cornet and maybe also check out Will Spencer's shop and the guys over at Eclipse while I'm there so I guess I better rent a car with snow tires :)
  6. astreet83

    astreet83 Member

    Butlins is a great contest!!!

    Bring plently of dollars too!!!

    Normally there are approx 20 to 26 bands completing in the 1st sec. The piece for 2011 is:

    First Section:
    Granite Variations
    Publisher: Bernaerts Music

    Never played it or heard it so can't comment, sorry :(

    Skegness is a lovely resort, it was used mainly in the 80's as a holiday resort for the miner workers from the surrounding area. Plently of slot machines and them ban 2p machine's where you spend at least £5 trying to win something worth 10p. But its all fun.

    If your looking at flights the nearest airport would be probably Doncaster Robin Hood with a 1 hours drive to Skeg or East Midlands with a 2/3 hour drive. If your flighting direct to the UK I would imagine it will be a London airport but if you could Birmingham that would save you a good few hours travel.
  7. astreet83

    astreet83 Member

    It has snowed a few times at the Butlins contest but its mainly rain and wind and watered down beer :biggrin:
  8. Elliebone

    Elliebone Member

    This is THE banding event of the year here in the UK. It is not to be missed. A real festival of banding. You would be made most welcome and I am certain you would find it worth the trip.

    Without wishing to upset anyone, Skegness is not the most scenic coastal resort in the UK, but it is within reasonable driving distance of Lincoln (fabulous cathedral and castle) and Sherwood Forest for Robin Hood fans!
  9. Mr. Stomvi

    Mr. Stomvi Member

    Watered down beer ??? That cuts it. No way !! Do they have any band contests in Belgium ?? :)
  10. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Nah its OK - the beers only watered down by the driving rain and icicles...

    If you are entered into the 1st section then there will be a pretty big field - the last two years have had entries of over 20 bands. I'd say the standard in the 1st section is about as good as you'll get outside of our National Finals - there are usually at least a couple of bands there that either qualified the year before or have gone on to qualify immediately afterwards at the Areas.

    The resort is OK provided you go for silver chalets - sorry 'apartments' - or above, you can go full board or self-catering depending on your budget. I've never done full board myself but I hear to food is pretty good and the self catering rooms have enough stuff to allow you to prepare simple meals (good enough for a weekend stay), plus there are plenty of places within the camp to eat, or you could always go into Skegness town if you wanted.
  11. astreet83

    astreet83 Member

    Beer has improved over the years.

    It is famous in the uk for expensive watered down beer at Butlins but it isn't now. Infact the Butlins at Skeg has had a massive upgrade and the bars are very nice and modern
  12. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    Real beer drinkers don't go to Butlins for the beer ...

    Doesn't matter how "nice and modern" the bars are, they still don't serve real beer, only lager and "smoothflow" keg fizzy chemical-laced beer substitute; and horribly over-priced at that.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2010
  13. Di B

    Di B Member

    For the ale friendly people there are pubs just outside Butlins that do better beer, but you don't get the Butlins effect!

    Best to stay on-site. Staying off-site will mean you have to pay an entrance fee and don't get any of the entertainment included. Done both self catering and half board - both are ok :)

    If you have been 'invited' chances are it will be the top section you are invited to. Would double check with the organisers.

    If you aren't playing with the top section then on Sunday you can listen (with hangover) to the top section entertainments contest or the youth section contest which seems to get stronger each year.

    Rusty Morris was there last year (and spent a few hours dancing with girls in the nightclub!!) so ask him if you want a locals viewpoint of Butlins!

    Oh! For those who want a break from the bar there is a nice indoor pool with big slides, so bring cozzies!
  14. Owen S

    Owen S Member

    The last year or two, they've actually had bottles of Bateman's Victory behind the bar. Still horribly over-priced though.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2010
  15. towse1972

    towse1972 Active Member

    Lots of rumours about bands from the North West declining their invites due to the short amount of time between Butins and the area contest this year.
  16. Elliebone

    Elliebone Member

    The bronze chalets have been done up and are absolutely fine - if a bit on the small side. You will only be in them for about 3 hours a night anyway so why worry? They are also nearest the middle of the camp (sorry - resort) and very handy for the bars and the venues.

    The food on the breakfast/dinner option is more than adequate for a weekend - and it saves you having to plan anything. It's in a food-court style with plenty of choice.
  17. Kjata

    Kjata Member

    Yer why is that, me and my parents stayed in gold last year, thinking it would be convenient and good quality, and it turned out we were furthest away from all the action....... But I supposed closest to the car park!?
  18. Mr. Stomvi

    Mr. Stomvi Member

    "Lots of rumours about bands from the North West declining their invites due to the short amount of time between Butins and the area contest this year."

    They are chickening out on us already are they ? We must have scared them out of the water when they saw pictures of us with our cornets with the upturned bells like Dizzy Gillespie !!! :)
  19. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    Not as cold as Ohio (assuming that the average temps I saw are in Farenheit!!!!), although in the last four years it has been precipitous to say the least.

    Depends on whether you consider this as a jolly up (get drunk and stay drunk), or as a serious contest. Make sure that your medical insurance covers cirrhosis.

    Jolly Up = Get into the Sun and Moon on arrival, wait until closing, find chalet. Get up with hangover and play. Remostrate vocally about how you played wonderfully and that it was like being New York because you were mugged over 18 times.
    Keep drinking
    Top up your alcohol levels at regular intervals
    Go to bed
    Get up
    Have below mentioned fry up twice
    Drink again
    Go to bed
    Get up
    Say final goodbye to the bar staff in all of the bars you have visited over the weekend
    Return to Ohio for a blood transfusion

    Serious contest -
    Arrival -Sensible imbibing on the Friday evening. A few beverages followed by some sodas.
    Saturday - Get up draw 3 or 4 play get in the bar as it opens, stay there until the results.
    As is the norm the results room (upstairs at Reds) fills up very quickly so you may want a designated seat getter. Best that they sit and watch the first section, and then grab as many chairs as possible. Once the rest of you have arrived, you ply the hero with as many drinks as possible, due to their inhuman effort to retain 30 seats for your comfort.
    Either adjourn to Centre Stage or Jaks and drink til the early hours.
    Return to chalet for further liquid refreshment in the shape of pre purchased cans.
    Crash on your bed fully clothed, still in uniform earns bonus points.
    Sunday - Wake up - Shower under tepid and unforceful water. Avail yourself of a full English breakfast
    2 X Eggs
    2 rashers of Bacon
    2 sausages
    baked beans
    Hash Browns, (Chips if available as you get more)
    Black Pudding Blood and Guts
    Four slices of Toast
    Two slices of Fried Bread
    A gallon of tea or coffee
    You are now ready to face the entertainments contest
    Go to entertainments contest, ensuring that there are ample breaks to obtain further liquid refreshment. Choose which bands are prime for a drinks break, and which bands are musts to see.
    Listen to the results as you won't be able to see by this point
    End up in Jaks again
    Go to sleep
    Quadruple points if still in band uniform
    Octuple points if you ironed it in the meantime
    Return to Ohio
    Have two weeks off to recover.

    Your welcome
  20. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    Mr Stomvi, I believe that Rusty MD of the Arkansas band has been over for the last couple of years, if you know him he could give you his perspective. I believe he's planning on coming over again next year, so it can't be all bad.....

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