Paddy's Welsh Area - 2011

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P_S_Price

Member
That being the case, one wonders why the organisers chose to ban Mr Ruston personally, but did not extend the same courtesy to the band - taking personal punitive action against those proven to be causing a disturbance rather than banning innocent and guilty players alike, potentially jeopardising the future of the band as an entity in the process, and not actually solving the problem as any players involved in the disturbance can avoid punitive measures simply by signing with another band.

One can only think they must have their reasons, though I'd be interested to read what those reasons were as there seems little logic in it to me.
I have been reading all of thos with a somewhat detached interest; not being a part of a contesting band. Your point about punishing the Innocent does seem relevant. I suspect that in court of Law this judgement against the entire band would be overturned on appeal due to the heresay elements and apparent minimal numbers involved.

Indeed in footballing circles (A kind of reasonable comparison), the Team is unlikely to get punished for Disrepute, when only a small number of individuals are involved; (and in Cricket the Pakistan team hasnt been barred from competition even after its members, including its captain, were found guilty of criminal game related infractions).

Having only seen mainly one side, its difficult to Judge, but on the stength of the evidence offerred this does appear to be 'Personal' against Wrexham as a band. and maybe the thoughts put forward by Bass Trumpet have some basis (If the band retain the services of the primary defendent then they must be Guilty by association - a very dubious case for conviction).

I must admit that if I was a member of the band I would be doing my utmost to get myself or fellow members of the band onto the Regional committee (which I believe is an elected body?) to try to redress this; or at least gain an insight into the deliberations.

The apparent disinclination by the Regional committee to formally issue its findings tends to re-emphasize the personal nature of the dispute.

One thing is for sure Neither party has covered itself in Glory!
 

P_S_Price

Member
...I think that once you put on a uniform, you are representing the whole band....
I suspect that you might feel quite different if your name was being bismirched because of the actions of a couple of individuals, of whom you had no control, or werent even present in the room.

Does the actions of the US forces in pakistan recently mean that Our forces should be tarished in that way? They are both under the umbrella of the UN!
 

tubafran

Active Member
You can't help but feel that if the band had quickly distanced itself from the actions of a minority following the contest that the ban would not have been imposed on the band (this has happened before). It would have been in everyone's best interest, band continues to be able to compete nationally, conductor misses 2 (possibly 4) contests over 2 years... needs of the many outweigh those of the few (so to speak :)). By standing shoulder to shoulder with the "guilty" party, they seem to have been tarred with the same brush.
But according to the very early postings the first the band heard of any action against them was when they received the ban (along with the MD) so its hard to see why and how they would take that action. The original decision apparantly being made without the band being asked for their comments - their only subsequent recourse being the appeal, at which they were able to put their case.
 

scotchgirl

Active Member
I suspect that you might feel quite different if your name was being bismirched because of the actions of a couple of individuals, of whom you had no control, or werent even present in the room.

Does the actions of the US forces in pakistan recently mean that Our forces should be tarished in that way? They are both under the umbrella of the UN!
Actually, I would feel even more that it could be dealt with 'in house'...have Wrexham Band actually taken any sanctions against the players/conductor involved at all? OR are they choosing to stick by the behaviour that has effectively seen their band banned from entering the Area next year, and their conductor from taking part for 2 years?

Surely, a true 'band' member wouldn't actually WANT to do anything that would bring the name of their band into disrepute in the first place...but if they did, I would expect the committee/other members of the band to sanction the people involved themselves...

So...I wouldn't feel aggrieved against the Area committee for sanctioning the whole band...I would feel aggrieved that people who I trust as friends and fellow band members, had acted in any way inappropriately while in the uniform in which I take pride.
 
Not sure where to start with this one scotchgirl because your post hits deep into the heart of the problem. I have been with Wrexham for little over one year, joining just before this erupted. As soon as the adjudicator was announced for the Area (just over a month after I joined) it was clear there was already a can of worms over-spilling. You must have been following this thread so I hope you have read the statement we presented to the appeal panel some pages ago. You must therefore have noted the significant events leading into the contest which highlighted (in our view) the strong possibility that the integrety of the contest may be compromised.
You must also have noted that Mr Ruston did offer his resignation after the announcement of the bans. However, the main reason for this reply - the band decided to stand by Mr Ruston because we felt that there were people out there that wanted his head on a plate and that was just not fair. You can also see from the statement that we did not plead his innocence, but only attempt to mitigate his actions. We also did not turn on any other member because no other member (unless the WRC or Appeal Panel can explain otherwise) did bring our band into disrepute (back to the mythical letter).
Just to widen this slightly. I am sure many bands out there have long serving, successful and loyal MD's. Do you really think a band should turn on that person under circumstances such as this. If your band was treated in the way that we have been treated then surely you would not lie down and allow people to walk all over you.
It is true that this forum will not resolve anything officially, but it remains the only place we can answer to the banding community if anyone has issue with what happened. I am also sure there will be no response from the parties that accuse us (althought if euphomanic is reading this he might enlighten us as to how the "expedition" of the letter is going). Nonetheless 92,000 views and I think 30,000 of them in the last 6 weeks indicate there is still significant interest in this story.
 

towse1972

Active Member
I suspect that you might feel quite different if your name was being bismirched because of the actions of a couple of individuals, of whom you had no control, or werent even present in the room.

Does the actions of the US forces in pakistan recently mean that Our forces should be tarished in that way? They are both under the umbrella of the UN!
It's banding, not Pakistan (although i appreciate the comparison)......I agree with Scotchgirl (which i am sure will surprise her!). Once you wear the uniform you represent the band. I repeat we are talking about Brass Bands not war!
 

BikeBadger

Member
Once you wear the uniform you represent the band. I repeat we are talking about Brass Bands not war!
Totally agree with you on the uniform thing. The performance starts as soon as the walking outs are on - it ends when you're back on the bus.
And yes, we're not talking about war. But we are talking about an iniquity which continues to eat at the true heart of Welsh banding. I don't condone bad behaviour. Neither do I condone shadowy dealings done with dubious and selfish motives.
 

P_S_Price

Member
...but it remains the only place we can answer to the banding community ....
Not quite, as I mentioned above - Stand for election to the comitteee. You will find a much stronger voice I suspect (at least you will be on the inside). To paraphrase Sir Humphrey "... Now we are on the inside we can really mess the whole thing up..."

If you are as harshly treated as the threads imply, and other welsh bands support you, there should be no difficulty in packing the committee with friendly faces!
 

Ianroberts

Well-Known Member
Actually, I would feel even more that it could be dealt with 'in house'...have Wrexham Band actually taken any sanctions against the players/conductor involved at all? OR are they choosing to stick by the behaviour that has effectively seen their band banned from entering the Area next year, and their conductor from taking part for 2 years?

Surely, a true 'band' member wouldn't actually WANT to do anything that would bring the name of their band into disrepute in the first place...but if they did, I would expect the committee/other members of the band to sanction the people involved themselves...

So...I wouldn't feel aggrieved against the Area committee for sanctioning the whole band...I would feel aggrieved that people who I trust as friends and fellow band members, had acted in any way inappropriately while in the uniform in which I take pride.
Have you read any of the posts on here ? because from all of the posts I have read, NO PLAYER WAS INVOLVED !
you appear to be ignoring that fact in all of your sermons on here !!

I(which i am sure will surprise her!). Once you wear the uniform you represent the band. I repeat we are talking about Brass Bands not war!
It surprises me that any one agrees with her !
 

scotchgirl

Active Member
"Throughout all of this there was only myself, and three Wrexham players, one of whom was not involved in any disagreements but was only trying to be a peacemaker"

This is a direct quote - copied and pasted - written by WR

Please explain what is meant by this if ' NO PLAYER WAS INVOLVED' (not sure on how to achieve the 'capitalised, enboldened and underlined text' look).

So yeah, it's really shocking that anyone agrees with me when you seem to disagree with yourselves about what actually occurred....;)
 

simonium

Member
This is great! Trolling and furious responses. Scotchgirl makes some valid points although I suspect part of the point of making them is to wind up people who through their own fault or not are feeling pretty sore about the subject.

What I always find amusing at contests is people in uniforms, drunk and disorderly, slagging off rival bands, adjudicators, organisers often within earshot of all of the above with nary a thought they're representing an organisation.
 

4thmandown

Member
What a sorry mess this whole issue has become, and all the worse for the fact that the Welsh committee have failed in their promise to provide a written response. It is downright rude for one thing and I think this is the crux of the matter. There has been an apparent total lack of ability throughout for the committee to communicate and set up a proper dialogue, right from the time that concerns were raised about BB adjudicating at the areas to the present. It has left a vacuum into which all manner of chinese whispers, rumour and counter-rumour have descended and people on all sides have consequently been hurt. I applaud WR for being so open.

Perhaps this has become a reflection of the over-emphasis on contesting in the brass band world anyway. Now I've finally grown up a bit, I don't get het up about them, I certainly don't get nervous (I've been through OFSTED!) and use the occasion as a chance to catch up with some old friends and contempories that I don't get to meet very often. I worry that in some quarters and especially in the case of some fly-by-night mercenaries the results of a contest can have a marked effect on the future of a band. I've seen too many bands implode following a bad result, or relegation. Perhaps a main function of a brass band, or any musical group for that matter, which is to provide music for enjoyment for performer and public has been forgotten. I have wondered on occasion when rehearsing some god-awful note-bashing exercise for the Areas why the hell I'm doing it - and perhaps that's one of the reasons why so many brass players choose not to get involved in brass bands in the first place.
 

GordonH

Active Member
I have wondered on occasion when rehearsing some god-awful note-bashing exercise for the Areas why the hell I'm doing it - and perhaps that's one of the reasons why so many brass players choose not to get involved in brass bands in the first place.
That's what happened to me...
 

stevetrom

Well-Known Member
I, and many other brass players, play in brass bands BECAUSE they contest. it's a fundamental part of brass banding for most of us.
 

GordonH

Active Member
I, and many other brass players, play in brass bands BECAUSE they contest. it's a fundamental part of brass banding for most of us.
It always has been, but it has become the dominant thing even in the lower sections over the past 20 years.
 

stevetrom

Well-Known Member
"Most"? - I doubt it. "Some", arguably ...
I feel a poll is needed, I would say contesting is an integral part of their hobby for most brass band players.


Other brass players may prefer jazz, big band, swing band, wind band our orchestra and that is fine but bras band players on the while love competing

IMHO
 
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