Members of bands from the award winning Abraham Darby Specialist School for the Performing Arts, Madeley, Telford returned from Chepstow on Sunday having achieved two Gold Regional Awards at the West of England and South Wales Regional Festival of the National Concert Band Festival. The Showband received its eighth successive Regional Gold Award and the School’s Jazz Band also received a Gold Award which as a result of scooping these awards both bands have now received an automatic invitation to participate in the National Festival which will be held at the Bridge House Theatre and the Guy Nelson Concert Hall, Warwick in April 2008. Both of the school bands have achieved unprecedented success at the National Festival in previous years with the Showband having achieved six consecutive National Gold Awards and the Jazz Band having secured five National Gold Awards in the last six years with the last four awards being in consecutive years. The Showband under the musical direction of Rachel Morton, who had recently taken over the band since the departure of Simon Platford earlier this year, performed Flying the Breeze written by Philip Sparke and Where Never Lark or Eagle Flew by the American composer James Curnow. The Jazz Band programme included Northwest Journey, Aftershock, Children of the Sun, Misty and Gotta Get you into my Life, under their new Musical Director Dougie Bill. Rachel Morton, the school’s Head of Music and Musical Director of the Showband commented “that both of the bands had worked very hard since the beginning of the school year in order to achieve these tremendous results and coupled with the band’s dedication this result again is evidence of the ever increasing list of sustained and outstanding consistent achievements over many years. Both the Showband and the Jazz Band are now looking forward to participating in the National Festival next April in Warwick”.