Following on from our success on 'James Cook' in the First Section at the weekend the Ipswich and Norwich Co-op Band are looking forward to ‘circumnavigating’ their way to Harrogate in September - their first trip to the National Finals in over ten years. Two years ago the band was ‘knocked for six’ when we were demoted to the First Section after our performance of Journey to the Centre of the Earth, my first contest with the band. However, with hindsight, this has given us some breathing space and a chance to re-build and work together to grow stronger. Butlins this year was a fantastic result for us against some top class national competition but all the members worked hard giving us our first step on the ladder to where we want to be. The result at the weekend proved that Butlins was no fluke and we look forward to representing the London and Southern Counties region in Harrogate in September followed by a return to the Championship Section in 2009 New Signing In addition to the great result at the weekend the Ipswich and Norwich Co-op Band are pleased to be able to announce the signing of Steve Alexander on Soprano from the Wigston Band. Steve is a first class Soprano player who has been a regular ‘dep’ for us over the last twelve months. He was part of our Butlins team and we are thrilled that he has agreed to sign with the band in a full-time capacity well in advance of our finals appearance. I would also like to publicly thank Paul Varney for jumping into the Sop seat for the area where he did a great job whilst Steve fulfilled his commitments for the area to Wigston. Paul will now return to his favoured B-flat Final Thanks Finally, on behalf of the band, I would like to thank all the people who have sent us congratulations and good wishes for the result at the weekend. Also a deserved thanks to David Hobbs and the London and Southern Counties contest organisers for a tremendously well run event, as always. Congratulations to all the qualifiers but particularly to our fellow First Section ‘finalists’, Jersey Premier Brass; we look forward to seeing you in Harrogate.