Hi Everyone I'm doing a bit of research into brass band contesting and the importance of it (or unimportance of it depending on your opinion). I'd be really interested to hear people's views for or against contesting, why we do it, how you believe it benefits (or damages) brass banding and any other views you have on this subject. Just to get the ball rolling, I believe that a huge benefit of contesting is that it's one of the main reasons why the standard of playing has remained so high for all these years, despite the lack of sponsorship, fewer players getting paid now and having full time jobs doing something other than playing etc. Many non-brass banders don't understand contesting - music is for enjoyment, it shouldn't be a competition - is one comment I've heard. I'd be really interested to hear your opinion whichever side of the fence you sit on!