National Finals Venue . . . .

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by Al, Dec 16, 2002.

  1. Al

    Al Member

    . . is it too early to discuss the venue for the 2003 National Finals (lower sections) venue up in Dundee?

    Its a long coach/train journey for the vast majority of bands, and requires at least one night's stay for most. It sounds so negative, but some people in our band have already expressed a concern about the time and cost that would be involved - is it worth it?

    This of course assumes we qualify - never good to do that now is it! Still, a band has to be prepared for these things.

    Any comments from other bandspeople . . . .?
  2. Tubby the Tuba

    Tubby the Tuba New Member

    Don't knock it 'till you try it, you might even like it.

    Look at it as an excuse to get away for the weekend, if you plan for it well in advance and fund raise, it's not that expensive for a coach and a couple of nights stay at a hotel.

    Much more fun than travelling to a contest and back in the same day.

    Even if the contest result doesn't go to plan you can still have a great time. :D
  3. picju96

    picju96 Member

    They didnt think of us coming from Jersey did they?!
  4. Al

    Al Member

    Nice reply Tubby

    I wish there were a few more with that approach in our band. We did Torquay - great time was had by all.

    We're hoping - along with every other band in the section of course - to qualify again. It only takes two or three players though to get negative, to make it hardly worth the while going ie. we won't be at our full strength to compete at that level.

    I will wait until the subject comes up again in the band and perhaps direct the detractors to this forum and this thread.

    (I hope there are more replies like yours)


  5. Roger Thorne

    Roger Thorne Active Member

    Al wrote:

    Don't wait until the subject crops up again - tell them about this forum at your next rehearsal.

  6. Rob

    Rob Member

    But then when they were in Torquay they didn't think of all the Scottish and N. English bands either did they??!! :?: :!:
  7. satchmo shaz

    satchmo shaz Active Member

    its very difficult to pick a venue to suit everyone so why dont they pick more central ones like bimingham, nottingham and harrowgate. BTW I personally like a weekend away!
  8. McEuphie

    McEuphie Member

    2003 Venue

    Having my roots in the North (near Edinburgh - now living in Cheshire) I have to say that I'm glad the finals are heading there (give the Northerners a bit of a travel rest)- was a bit surprised that Dundee was picked - not that it is a bad choice - Dundee is a lovely city - on the banks of the River Tay - the obvious place for holding the contest is the Caird Hall which is a grand classical building which should have pretty good acoustics.
    Edinburgh would have been my first choice, using the Usher Hall, which is Scotland's answer to the Albert Hall) but probably cost prohibitive.
    I attended the finals in Nottingham a few years back which was pretty good but there was a bit of a hike from the coach park through the shopping centre to get to the actual contest hall (was playing bass at the time!).
    But in the end the venue doesn't matter - if a band qualifies and wants to go then it will find a way!
    There is talk in the federation about having Symphony Hall in Birmingham as the home of the lower finals?

  9. davidwalton

    davidwalton Member


    I don't think it is so much an issue of where it is, but the facilities at the Venue.

    Again, I believe there will only be one hall so again there is plenty of room for a srew up with times, etc.

    No, I have no faith in the organisation of this event. This more than anything puts Bands off.

    This event is the most important for Bands, yet it is not organised as such.

    We did Torquay and I personally did not enjoy it. Why? mainly because as a Band we were expecting to be treated a little better, rather than just some cattle!

    Hours of hanging around, little decent food, hardly any for vegitarians that I could find, and that cockup with the times the pieces took to play all meant that no one was going to perform at their best.

    Perhaps I am just expecting too much, but I for one do not like to pay good money for something I won't enjoy.

    If we make it to the finals this next year, which I doubt as we only just got promoted to the 2nd section, there will be serious talks about whether it is worth the money, time, and grief to go for us.
  10. Roger Thorne

    Roger Thorne Active Member

    Davidwalton wrote:

    I know there's been a lot of comments about the Lower Section Finals held at Torquay particularly on the timings etc., but having competed with my own band I found the whole weekend very enjoyable. I thought the venue was very accommodating, and the stewards very helpful. I was particularly impressed with the changing and warm-up facilities - complete with 25 chairs and music stands, set out in band formation! There were plenty of trade stands and although I only visted the restuarant on one occassion, found it be more than adequate.

    Yes, we definately enjoyed it and hopefully if we are lucky enough to qualify again next year we will enjoy the delights of Bonnie Dundee.

  11. Brian

    Brian Member

    National Finals..Venue

    In Nottingham there are three venues all within walking distance of each other..The Royal Concert Hall...The Albert Hall..and Peoples College Hall..However; as a previous correspondent stated, the cost is prohibitive..Several years ago the Royal Concert Hall alone was 10,000 pounds for the weekend, booked 3yrs in advance, and booked for a minimum of 5yrs. As an ex official of the Midland Area, all these venues were looked at, and every time it came down to cost..Did you know that Booseys only put 500 pounds into the Area's coffers to run the Area contest..And they say where it WILL BE HELD !
  12. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Tut Tut! Such negativity, and that after roasting a couple of championship section bands at Aylesbury! (Ok bit of a one off but a result nevertheless).

    I think we have as good a chance as ANY band in the second section.

    As for Torquay and Dundee so much has been said on the subject of Torquay that it doesn't need repeating, lets hope the new organisers take notes form thier predecessors.... rumour has it that they are looking for a permenant home for the lower section finals, hopefully around the Yorkshire area since this is the most central location.
  13. Brian

    Brian Member

    National finals Venues.

    Yorkshire Area the MOST CENTRAL....Who taught you geography ? The most Central City of all Areas is Nottingham ( Boosey's state this ) and if you look at a map showing all the Area boundaries, it's probably the only thing B & H got right since they took over the Nationals..Brian..P.S. and I taught Geography for a number of years, and I had to agree with them.sadly..
  14. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    I have never seen a map of the area boundries so I don't happen to know the northernmost and southern most bands. I just picked an area halfway between the north of Scotland and the south of England (sit's back and waits for pointless lecture on geography :evil: ).

    As an intersting side point, who are the northernmost and southernmost bands? (east and west could be interesting as well).

    Also does anyone know what sort of an audience you get a Nottingham. Lets face it if we want to get better venues then it means more money which means getting an audience in the hall. If memory serves correct Torquay was pretty empty for much of the time.
  15. Brian

    Brian Member

    National Finals venues

    If you want to fill Halls for the National Finals, put all sections on the same day in the same town...Yes just like it used to be before they seperated the Championship section from the others in London...At that time all Halls were full most of the time....including the Championship Section...I remember standing outside the RAH in the hope of getting a ticket for the standing area....If you want a map of the Areas, your Area Committee should have one, indeed every band in the Midland was issued with one some years ago when they split the Area..These maps showed the Northern/Southern/Westerly/and Easterly Bands, lines joining all points gave the central point, as well as the location of 50 other bands in coastal areas.. the mid point was 2miles SE of Nottingham, if you would like a more detailed explanation, I stillhave a copy of the 54page document B&H sent to all Areas...I like Geography :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D
  16. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Re: National Finals venues

    Aah the good old days :wink: such a shame that we can't get audiences like that again. We recently did the Open section at Aylesbury contest and there were about 4 people in the audience. Even the other bands couldn't be bothered to listen. Shame really cause we came 2nd and embarrased a coulpe of championship section bands who wandered around afterwards complaining to which the simple reply was "you didn't hear us did you?....."
    I still have memories of a packed Albert Hall when they did the Gala Concert.
    No doubt propping open a door somewhere :D I wonder how many of the bands in there have now ceased to be. 2 bands folded (First City and Brent Brass) in L&SC this year and a good many others are only just hanging in there (Luton to name one).

    I don't :D I navigate by pubs. Takes longer to get anywhere but after two or three you don't care where you are :D :D :D
  17. Al

    Al Member

    Whatsharp? wrote:
    I believe that Lerwick Brass Band in the Shetland Isles, is the most northernly band. I was honoured to be invited to play with the band whilst working in Shetland and was amazed at how the band had so many similarities to any other band in Britain - the music, the characters, politics etc etc.. However, just like most bands it was also very unique and very much a part of the local community.

    Although not the most westerly by location, there are 8 bands in the Isle of Man (population approx 80,000), two of which regularly make the journey to Blackpool to compete in the Areas. The Island has been represented at the National Finals on a number of occasions. When working out the geographical centre of Brass Banding in Britain, perhaps necessary travel by sea/air should be taken into consideration?

    A job for Brian and a computer if ever there was one! :)
  18. picju96

    picju96 Member

    We're probably the southernmost Brass Band in the British Isles in Jersey.
  19. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Well thats settled then.... It's Harrogate next year....

    Having never been there I can't really comment. Anyone else?
  20. picju96

    picju96 Member

    they do have overseas grants at pontins...

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