National Finals: Fourth Section Runners and Predictions
Published in Contest on 2013-09-09 by Empty Chairs
More news from National Finals
Nineteen 4th Section Bands will descend upon Cheltenham Racecourse on September 21st where Derek Southcott and Gareth Pritchard will be listening to their performances of Philip Sparke's A Malvern Suite.
What can we find out about these contenders to the 4th section crown? Who do we think will be in the running at Cheltenham? Well, read on...
Ammanford Town Silver Band - Wales
Formed in the 1850′s at the Pontaman Chemical Works as a Drum and Fife Band and becoming the Ammanford Silver Band in the 1920'staking an active part in temperance campaigns. We don't imagine that the current band will be extolling the benefits of temperance at Cheltenham however.
With 2nd place at the Welsh Areas and a 4th place in the 2nd section at the SEWBBA (Ebbw Vale) Contest in May the band has had a successful year. This is their 11th trip to the finals, their last trip be a winning one to the Guild Hall in Preston in 2001.
Barnsley Metropolitan Band - Yorkshire
The first trip to the Finals for Barnsley means that for the first time since 1992 they are competing in two "test piece" competitions in a year. Over the years they have been a mid positioned band in the (relatively small) Yorkshire 4th Section.
It a special year for the band as they are celebrating their 40th Anniversary in November. Perhaps it can be all the more special.
Barrhead Burgh Band - Scotland
In 2006 they were at this competition in the 2nd section and were promoted to the 1st section from 2007. Since then however the Scottish band has slowly dropped back to the 4th Section. This year might offer the chance for salvation as they have already achieved top spots in the Scottish Championships and Fife Brass Band Festival along with a 2nd place in the Scottish Challenge Cup at the end of last year.
Burneside Brass – North of England
It is a first appearance for Burneside Brass at the Finals for a band that has only recently returned to the national contesting stage. With little recent contesting experierence, only the North of England Areas in 2012 and 13, Burneside are a bit of a mystery to predict.
Camborne Junior Contesting – West of England
Camborne Junior Contesting were the 4th section winners by a significant margin and have since performed well in both the 4th and 3rd sections at Bugle Contest. As a band bolstered with players by the winding up of Camborne B we would expect to see them do well and Alan Pope has made Camborne Youth a force to be reckoned with.
City of Oxford Silver - London and Southern Counties
City of Oxford Silver, Oxfordshire’s longest established brass band, came third out of seventeen contesting bands in the 4th section. An inconstant performer on the contest stage the band has not competed in a contest since.
Coppull & Standish – North West
The current Brass At The Guild (Preston) Contest (4th Section) and Butlins Mineworkers (4th Section) champions have have seen a good run of results in the last 12 months.
Coppull Subscription Band was formed in 1873 as a village band by the name of Crooke Band. In January 2005 they merged with Standish Band to form the Coppull and Standish Band.
Ebbw Valley – Wales
Current National Eisteddfod of Wales (Fourth Section), GBBA Own Choice (Section C), GBBA March (Section C), SEWBBA (Blaenavon) Contest (Fourth Section), Welsh Area (Fourth Section) and SEWBBA (Ebbw Vale) Contest (Fourth Section) champions.
Just like the Open there's a good chance that Ebbw will take the 4th Section Championship back to Wales.
An impressive 2 years of contesting leads the way in this section.
Gawthorpe Brass '85 - Yorkshire
Unsurprisingly formed in 1985 Gawthorpe is a modern breed of brass band with a keen focus on youth development and a focus on the community.
Relegated from the 3rd Section in 2012 Gawthorpe will be hoping a good performance might see them able to bounce straight back.
Great Yarmouth Brass – London and Southern Counties
Relegated in 2009 Colin Swaep has been working hard to see the band work it's way back. Winning at the East Anglian Spring Festival will have boosted confidence as they return to the Finals stage for the third occasion.
Ifton Colliery - Midlands
The Midlands Champions must have surprised a few people in March after results of 21st in 2012 and 15th in 2011. Before falling into contesting obscurity in 1999 the band were flying in the second section and they must be hoping to continue along the road to recovery.
Market Rasen – Midlands
Promoted to the 3rd Section from 2014 they will be hoping to prove they have what it takes to do well at Cheltenham. A new Musical Director, David Dernley, will be leading the charge from the Midlands Area runners up.
Moulton '77 -Midlands
A fifth visit to the Finals for Moulton '77 after 3rd place in the Regionals saw them cross the finish line. They too will begin 2014 in the third section and like Market Rasen they will be hoping to prove they have what it takes to perform at that higher level.
Pilling Jubilee Silver – North West
Since qualifying at the North West Area Pilling have gone on to become Kirkby Lonsdale Champions. Musical Director Len Charnock has been working the band hard.
Simon Langton Brass – London and Southern Counties
Formed in 2011 Simon Langton Brass has made quite a dramatic start becoming London and Southern Counties Champions in March. Promoted to the 3rd Section from next year they will hope to continue to show the remarkable form that has catapulted them since their first contest just under 18 months ago.
Swindon Brass – West of England
Swindon exploded into 3rd place at Torquay in March winning promotion at the same time. This will be their third appearance at the National Finals, and we all know third time is a charm.
Trimdon Concert – North of England
Their first appearance at the Finals was in 1931 and this years will be their 5th. The current North of England Champions have had solid contest results over the last year so will be optimistic for their chances.
Tullis Russell Intermediate - Scotland
With only a smattering of results from their first contest in 2012 it's hard to predict anything about Tullis Russell Intermediate. Their website gives little away to so really your guess is as good as ours.
Based on the 3rd in 2012 and 2nd this year we assume they will be in the running.
Wilton and District – West of England
Coming 15th in this competition last year should be a good building block for Wilton and District. The band have been working with Derek Broadbent in preparation for the contest and with promotion to the third section already in the bag for next year the band should be relaxed and able to enjoy the day.
Anything could happen on the day but the bands we expect to see near the top of the results will be Camborne Junior Contesting, Ebbw Valley, Gawthorpe brass '85, Simon Langton Brass, Tullis Russell Intermediate and Wilton and District.
If we're going to predict a winner at Cheltenham in the 4th... well we would put a fiver on Ebbw Valley.