I was fortunate to have attended the Europeans over the weekend and found it a great experience. I was very very disappointed with the attendance at the contests themselves. After seeing so many empty chairs on the Friday Set test, I assumed that this was because of work commitments etc and more people would be there on the Saturday for the own choice, but to my surprise there were not many more people there. I thought about this on Saturday and estimated that there were approx 2500 seats in the auditorium and at best for the contest it was two thirds full. Think about the number of active bandsman there are in the UK, people who subscribe read publications (BBW, BB, Brass Herald etc), the number of those logging onto TMP (2000 atleast) and 4barsrest. In total I would guess that in total it would be at the very least five times the number of seats available in the auditorium. If this is the case, why was the hall not full? Are people generally not interested in attending? The trend is similar for concerts two, how many of your band go to a concert given by another band? One of our Australians TMP'ers has already stated how lucky we are to have these bands on our doorstep and I know many more in places like the US and Canada who would give their right arm to have been at the Europeans. The difference in attitude from the Uk for me was summed up when Stavanger played number 10 on Friday and managed to get off stage and be back in the audtorium to hear Cory who were drawn next. Alan McClaren also mentioned in his speech that he was thrilled to see a standing ovation for one band led by a group from another competing band. When do you see these things in a British contest? At a time when there is concern about the attendance at concerts and contests, shouldn't we as a banding community be doing more to support them? It seems to me, if we are not interested in concerts/contests etc, how can we expect anyone else to be? Your thoughts please.