I was interested to note that North West Contests intend to combine the Fleetwood, Northern Open and Guildhall events into one spectacular contesting festival. Their reasons for this move are no doubt justified, explained, and considered. However, having discussed what appeared to be a solution to lack of entrants, lack of sponsorship, etc with my uncle Percy, (He's deeply involved in North West banding). He is outraged by the prospect of the limited choice of test pieces, and sees this as a further nail in the contesting coffin! 'too soon after the summer hols for lower section bands to do either set piece' he says, and furthermore, 'Our band's not going on them terms!' Well North Banders, is Percy right, will this be welcomed with resounding approval, or reduced entries? CIAO, CORLEONE.