There is an excellent well researched recent article on 4barsrest.com http://www.4barsrest.com/articles/2008/art841.asp about the decline in numbers of Brass Bands over the past 25 years. The Figures are based on competing bands only, but they certainly give a good indication of the situation. Brass Bands have done quite well out of the National Lottery and I wonder if the figures would be quite a lot worse without the aid of the lottery grants. Personally, I think the brass band movement is quite healthy and I don't think there is anything to panic about but the figures do show a definite downward trend. Anyway, it's quite an interesting article and worth a read if only on the paragraphs for your own area. Any thoughts?