Old Hall Brass has been in existence for 30 years. Formed in January 1989 by Sue Sudworth and Neil Parkinson from the remains of the Orrell Silver Band, the band has risen from the Fourth Section to the First Section and currently resides as a Second Section band both under local and national gradings.
Originally based at Bispham Methodist Church, Billinge, in 2000 the band moved to “Crow’s Nest”, Windy Arbour home of a local scaffolding company then in 2009 the band moved to Roby Mill where it still resides.
Under the baton of the bands first conductor, Neil Parkinson, contesting success was achieved both at a local and national level, notably with Area Championship wins in 1997, 1999, 2000 and 2004 leading to appearances in four National Finals at Nottingham, Birmingham Symphony Hall, London Royal Albert Hall and Harrogate International Conference Centre.
Additionally the band became well known for it’s entertaining concert work, with concerts around the local area and further afield as well, notably with an appearance at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London in 2000 for a charity function plus a recent 8 night appearance in Brassed Off, the stage musical, held at Southport Little Theatre in February 2007 which led to a sell out concert by the band in June of the same year, which has now become an annual event.
In 2004, Neil retired from banding due to illness and the search was on for a new conductor.
Ian Porthouse took the band for its first appearance in the First Section North West Area contest, conducting Comedy Overture on which the band took a creditable 6th position. Grenville Moore took the band for a short time over the busy Christmas period, both men helping the band during what was a period of instability.
Following Grenville, Andrew Jones took the band for 12 months. Following Andrew’s decision to leave the band due to his busy schedule as head of music at Great Sankey High School, the band appointed Trevor Halliwell as conductor. Trevor’s professional approach to conducting helped stabilise the band and forge a more organised outlook for the band but in late 2008 Trevor moved on and for a while the band had no permanent conductor. John North was approached to help out Old Hall Brass for Christmas 2008, which was a success. The band asked John to become the MD on the back of this, and John agreed.
The band have produced four recordings “Debut”, “Shaken Not Stirred”, “Somewhere Out There” and “Laudate Dominum”. This latest release reflects the band’s love of hymns and other sacred music and, indeed, the title track is one of the band’s favourite test pieces.