Taverham Band was formed in November 1974 by a small group of villagers who were keen to start a brass band. With donations of monies and loans by founder members, the Band was able to purchase a set of instruments, from the folded Stibbard Band, to start its playing history.
With money raised over the years, these old tattered instruments were replaced one by one and a music library of more than 800 pieces compiled. In 1996 the Band completely replaced all its instruments with the assistance of a grant from the National Lottery, the existing instruments being used to teach new members.
The Band currently consists of over 40 members with an additional 20+ in the training band and learning to play brass, the junior teaching section playing a very important part in the long term future of the Band, with subsidised tuition and instrument loan.
All members of the Band are volunteers, and play not only for their own enjoyment, but also for the benefit of the local community. Sponsorship and concert income covers the Band’s running costs, purchase of music and equipment. Donations to charity are an important aspect of the Band, with money being raised over the years for Musical Keys, the N&N Asthma Unit, Norfolk Accident Rescue Service, Guide Dogs for the Blind, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, Macmillan Cancer Relief, Nelson’s Journey, Hall School, Vision Aid Overseas, Chatterbox Talking Newspaper, Norwich MS Society, Cancer Research UK, The East Anglian Air Ambulance, Pabulum, Supersportz Kids Club, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, Stepping Stones, The Stroke Association and Norwich Door To Door.
The Band specialises in concert work and undertakes many engagements during the year. It has a policy of providing the best entertainment for the general public whilst at the same time giving experience and encouragement to all its members, from ex-professional musicians to youngsters working hard to develop their skills. Each year the Band goes from strength to strength.
2004 was the Band’s 30th anniversary year, with the first of the October concerts (15th October 2004) falling exactly 30 years to the day from the inaugural committee meeting!
The Band’s first concert tour in October 2000 was based in St Goarshausen in Rhineland, with concerts in Koblenz, Bad Schwalbach, Bad Neuenahr, and Bad Bertrich. This tour helped everyone in the Band to get to know each other much better and was the foundation of the special family-like social structure that characterises Taverham Band.
August 2003 saw the Band on tour again. The first concert was in Valkenburg, Holland, the Band’s base for the week. Other concerts were in Brüggen; De Efteling Theme Park; the Three Countries Maze, Vaals; and Aachen.
Subsequent concert tours have been closer to home and of shorter duration. In 2008 concerts were performed in the Valley Gardens, Harrogate and in the grounds of the Castle at Knaresborough. 2010 saw the Band back in Yorkshire playing at a memorable concert in Haworth to help raise money to reinstate the Haworth Bandstand. A concert was also given at Valley Gardens, Roundhay Park, Leeds.
In June 2012, the Band spent the Jubilee holiday weekend in Derbyshire. From their base in Chesterfield, they gave a concert in Bakewell Town Hall, to raise funds to help secure the future of the building. Outdoor concerts were also given at Tissington, Carsington Water and Chatsworth House.
Taverham Band is a great group of people who really enjoy entertaining their public. But more than just being a group of musicians they have a great social life and spend a lot of time together outside of the rehearsal room and concert venue. Perhaps that’s why they are so popular and successful!