North West Region - 2nd Section


Supporting Member
1. Old Hall Brass, N. Parkinson, 4, 183
2. Wire Brass, J. Hinckley, 9, 181
3. Haslingden and Helmshore, D. Holland, 1, 180
4. Silk Brass AstraZeneca (Macclesfield), K. Mackintosh, 10, 179
5. Diggle, N. Law, 7, 178
6. Eagley, S. Rodgers, 3, 177
7. Delph, P. Goodwin, 8, 176
8. Blackpool Brass, S. Simpson, 6, 175
9. Flixton, P. Lockett, 12, 174
10. Greenalls, J. Ludden, 13, 173
11. Hawk Green (Marple), J. Richardson, 11, 172
12. Manx Concert Brass, I. Clague MBE, 5, 171
13. Skelmersdale Prize, N. Sheppherd, 2, 170

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Heard the first 5 bands in this section, and I have to admit, I was surprised by the result and the adjudicators comments from the stage?

Any comments?
davidquinlan said:
Heard the first 5 bands in this section, and I have to admit, I was surprised by the result and the adjudicators comments from the stage?

Any comments?

Surprised by what?

I was surprised that having made a big deal about tempos ettc and not just following the regionals cd recording that the results seemed not to follow what he said particularly with regard to Wire, who yes played it well note-wise but were well above tempo in a few of the movements.
Surprised that band 4 won.... I had band 1 as the best from the bunch I heard, can't really comment on what came after no 5.
My old band (Manx) in my opinion, didn't play as well as the comments sheet suggested , but I'm not sure they played as bad as a second last!

but there ya go.. that's contesting, it's the judges opinion that counts!

The comments relating to the Regionals CD were a bit bizzare. As an adjudicator, he should be judging each performance on it's own merits, not, as it seems, comparing it to a recording.....


New Member
I heard a few bands in section 2 but I didn't hear too much detail and most of this was down to extreme tempo rather than the over generous accoustic. Mr. Hope was spot on - if you can't hear the notes, what's the point? I didn't hear Wire Brass but perhaps they were good enough to realise a quicker tempo and get the detail out? They are a very good band when all's said and done!


Active Member
Comiserations to the Flixtonites, from what Lynchie said you deserved a little better. Well done to the qualifying bands though.


Active Member
I have to admit I was disappointed with our placing, but I was confused by the remarks made on stage... we've had all these debates about playing pieces the way the composer has set out, so how can playing it at slower tempos be a plus point?


I heard band no 1 ( Haslingden and Helmshore) and was very impressed with their sound especially.
I was pleased they came in the frame....they certainly deserved it. Well done!
lynchie said:
I was confused by the remarks made on stage... we've had all these debates about playing pieces the way the composer has set out, so how can playing it at slower tempos be a plus point?

I don't think he was saying play at slower speeds than marked but play at the speeds marked. In my view nearly all the bands I heard played too fast, particularly the last movement which is marked 100. Playing this movement at the correct tempo was what we found most difficult, particularly not speeding up towards the end. We worked really hard at the tempos and I felt our performance was very controlled as a result.


I play for Old Hall Brass, the band that won on the day. We put a lot of effort into this testpiece and at the end of the day we got a fantastic result. We tried, with the help of our musical advisor, Ian Brownbill, to interpret the piece as he and the band believed to be correct and the adjudicator obviously thought the performance was a good one on the day.

The point about tempo is one that I cannot really comment on having not heard any other bands but we did try to play it at quite a steady pace although on the day we went faster that we had planned!!!

I spoke to qiute a few people afterwards who did comment on some of the tempos chosen by bands and this was before the results were given.

We are chuffed to bits about our result but a lot of effort did go into getting it!!!!


Congratulations Old Hall Brass!
I think I can get away with saying that probably Wire Brass were expected to win, so you did a great job and thoroughly deserved your 1st place and title of 'Champions'.

Well Done and loads of best wishes and luck for the Finals.


Thanks for the congratulations. As a band , we put a lot of hard work into the piece, and it paid off on the day. Good luck to all who qualified for Harrogate in all sections.

Paul Sud
Old Hall Brass


New Member
Well done indeed to Old Hall Brass !! I heard you play and spoke to some of your crew in the bar.Really pleased for you.All the best for the Nationals.



i can definatly say that i at flixton feel robbed by the result. we played really well and if anyone haerd us at the 2003 area you cannot say that we have not improved over 10times at yet we only moved up one place. This is just wrong. We plaued definatly i performence that was well worthy of the top 6.


Supporting Member

I can't understand what all the whingeing is about. On the day it's the adjudicator's decision that is final. Alan Hope obviously liked our interpretation of the piece - hence our placing.

I can't see what people are confused about in his remarks before the results. The speeds on the recording are far in excess of what most second section bands can manage and still play musically. Wire is an exception, something they proved beyond doubt at Preston. The tempi on that recording are also way out from the given tempi on the score!

If we could all play as well as the top section bands we'd be in the top section.

Nobody said that all of the bands didn't play as well as they could. I'm sure everyone did. We all wanted to win. From the bands I listened to, most tried to play at tempos that were far in excess of those marked and the performances lost their sense of MUSIC! In one case I had to check that I was in the right hall, because the piece I heard was not the piece I was listening to. It seems to me that too many bands treat test pieces as if they were technical exercises and forget about the musical content.

In the Championship section the main way of distinguishing between the bands seems to be on technical ability, as a listen to any top section test piece will prove. In the lower sections some of us still like a good tune to be played like a tune, rather than like an exercise in finger twiddling :D

Congratualtions to all the winners and qualifiers. Commiserations to all the losers.

BTW: Alan Hope placed us last a couple of years ago when we were in a lower section. You win some, you lose some. :roll:


Supporting Member

so how can playing it at slower tempos be a plus point

Our tempos were as close as physically possible to those on the score. Most bands went at the waltz like a bull at a gate. Try waltzing at 200 bars per minute. Even Chopin doesn't expect that! :lol:

tubbythe tuba

New Member
I have listened to all of the bands and generally on a whole all the bands had a fairly good performance. Yes there is a lot of difference in the tempos and some bands actually played it very fast, not just through the quick sections but also through the slow ones as well. The times for the bands actually vary from 9 minutes to about eleven minutes.

I play for Wire brass and surprisingly our performance is not the shortest by a long way, which some people would lead you to believe, so some bands must have been a fair bit quicker than us.

Another point to note is that listening to the bands I found that it was difficult to hear the detail in the piece due to the room being awful.

I feel that Mr Hope had a bad enough job on the day with a test piece which was not a great test for most second section bands and also not being able to hear a damn thing. When the bands played loud a lot of the time it just turned into a mush. Maybe I would think differently if we hadn't qualified but hey thats life.

Finally I would just like to thank John Hinkley for all his hard work with the band over the last few weeks.


Supporting Member

I noticed a distinct difference between what I could hear on stage - just about everything - and what I could hear in the hall -a lot of muddiness - especially in the louder sections. I would not have liked to have been Alan Hope trying to sort out the playing from the echoes. :?

We always (well, sometimes :wink: ) play with a controlled sound that doesn't always do us a favour in large halls with a good acoustic, but I think it played to our advantage on Sunday.

Well done to you all at Wire. Look forward to a challenge match at Harrogate :) Maybe we'll both give each other a run for our money 8)


well done to old hall & wire and tough luck helmshore (E flat Andy - you can buy me a pint to make you feel better !!)
I've found this discussion v interesting. I play with YBS Concert and we took things as close to the marked tempo as we could but in a couple of places just pulled the tempo back a bit for the sake of clarity, this allowed us space to put expression into the music rather than just worry about waggling the valves. Many of the other bands, some very impressive and some less-so, took some of the variations at high speed and high volume. The net result in most cases was loss of control which just spoiled the listening experience through untidiness and overblowing. We could have had a technician in the box who might have penalised us for backing off the tempo, but fortunately we had a guy who was looking for a rounded, cohesive and expressive bit of music - which is what we were focussed on delivering.

I wonder what the adjudicator in Harrogate will be looking for??

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