Great North Eastern conductor dies The very sad Press Release reads: It is with deep sadness that I report the death of Eric Cunningham on Saturday 24th April, Eric was the musical Director of the Craghead Colliery Band and latterly the Ever Ready Band from 1950 - 1989. He was undoubtedly the driving force behind the Band during this period and it's many successes both Regionally and Nationally were due to his ability dedication and enthusiasm. The funeral will take place on Friday 30th April at Shotley Bridge and the Ever Ready Band will be providing music at the service. A tribute to Eric will be forwarded in the next few days. The funeral will take place on Friday 30th April at the Snods Edge Church Shotley Bridge at 1-00pm. Press Release issued by friend and former colleague Ray Huchinson.