100 Years of Remembrance

Posted on 11th November 2018 by


Today saw Skipton doing what it does best – coming together. The high street was packed, the church had standing room only and the rain and drizzle did not dampen the memories, the thoughts or wash away the notes.

The parade contained acting service men and women, musicians, retired officers and generals, school children, scouts, guides, army trainees, clergy, local businessmen and women and representatives from far and wide as well as members of the crowd who decided to walk and parade with them. The high street was full and the Service of Remembrance started at the war memorial and continued on afterwards into the Church – which had standing room only and they think about 600 + in the congregation.

Our part as the musical backdrop both out on the street and in the church during the sermon and the at the end of the service as people formed up again on the High Street was both poignant and fitting. The hymns and pieces specifically chosen to fit the occasion and the band played on despite the rain! It’s a day many people who play in brass bands see as one of the most important in the year. If you’ve been playing as long as I have you can probably count on the fingers on one hand the number of times it has been warm and sunny but the rain never stops the playing and the notes always come out somehow.

Sadly we have no records of the band from the time before and after the First World War except that we know ‘Jack Guy’s Mission Band’ was reformed as Skipton Prize Band after the first world war. We are sure our members played their part and if anyone has any information please feel free to share it with us.

The personal touches this year that many have made with the 100 Year Anniversary have been very special. In church today there were names on cards of all the soldiers from Skipton who had died, in my local town houses had been displaying the names of people from that specific house who died or who fought in the wars. One of our players had a photo of her grandad with her in her pocket and then on her stand as she played Nimrod as she knew he liked Elgar and wanted him to be part of the day’s events.

Although today is only one day and there are 364 more days in the year, we are asked as we leave the services to never forget and we never do forget – we always remember… The 11th November is just the reminder we need to keep us remembering and after today there is more than enough to keep us going for another year.


Posted in: Band Blog