Welcome To The Bedford Town Brass Band Website

New and visiting players are always welcome

About Us

BedfordTown Band was established in 1894 and is currently a charitable organisation (Charity No. 1173181) located in Bedford.

The charity promotes traditional English brass banding and musical arts, by means of concerts, contests and other related activities. Through its various musical groups;

Bedford Town Band

Bedford Town Concert Brass

Bedford Town Progress Brass

Bedford Town Brass Academy

Bedford Town Mature Learners

Bedford Town Wellbeing Brass

it educates members and prospective musicians of all ages in the skills, art and science of playing brass band music and instruments. It has an extensive music library with over 3000 works to perform and has instruments available for loan to band members who don’t own their own instrument.

Rehearsals take place throughout the week in the Primary Hall, Castle Newnham School, Polhill Avenue, Bedford, MK41 9DT. 

Information about the individual music groups is available via the band links above.

The bands can be booked for a variety of public and private events and they perform at band contests, entertainment concerts, school and village fetes, church services, carols and charity fund raising events throughout the year.

If you are interested in becoming a member of one of the bands, would like to attend a rehearsal, or would like to book one of the bands for an engagement please contact our Band Secretary.

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Latest News

  • Concert Brass At “The Greatest (Free) Show On Earth”

    Concert Brass players had a fabulous time taking part in the Saddleworth Whit Friday Band Contest on 24th June this year. The contest involves around 140 bands from all over the country and overseas playing marches in up to 11 villages around Oldham/ Saddleworth in Lancashire. Many thousands of spectators line the streets to watch the event and it is often referred to by those who attend as “The Greatest (Free) Show On Earth”. Here are some photos and a video of Concert Brass performing at 5 of the villages – Lees, Grotton, Lydgate, Uppermill and Dobcross.


  • All Bands Concert

    A busy week for our bands started last Saturday 18th May 2024, when every ensemble in our organisation came together at The Place Theatre for our annual All Bands Concert.
    Each band played very well, but it was particularly nice to see the great progress that our young musicians are making in our academy.
    Don’t forget; if you want your child to benefit from free brass tuition you can email [email protected] for information


  • Free Music Lessons For Mental Wellbeing


  • Bella Ciao Music Festival

    Bedford Town band are proud to be part of the Bella Ciao Music Festival, performing in St Paul’s Church, Bedford on Friday 26th April at 7pm.

    Bella Ciao Festival Brochure.

    Book Tickets via Ticket Source


More News

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Upcoming Events

The bands have a busy schedule of performances throughout the year supporting local organisations and events.

May 2024

Bedford Town Concert Brass

24th @ 4pm – Saddleworth, Lancs. – Whit Friday March Contest

July 2024

Bedford Town Concert Brass

20th @ 4pm – Bedford Town Bridge – Bedford River Festival

28th @ 3pm – Wixams Retirement Village – Concert

28th @ 12.00pm – Castle Newnham School, Bedford – School Fete

Aug 2024

Bedford Town Band

4th @ Mill Meadows Bandstand, Bedford – Concert

Sept 2024

Bedford Town Band

14th @ 19.30pm – Parsons Close Bandstand, Leighton Buzzard – Concert

Bedford Town Concert Brass

28th @ TBC – Kings House, Bedford – Bedfordshire Federation WI Concert

Oct 2024

Bedford Town Band

4th @ 19:00 – Corn Exchange, Bedford – Beer Festival

5th @ 20:00 – TBC – Concert

Nov 2024

Bedford Town Band

2nd @ All Day – Simon De Montford School,Evesham – Wychavon Band Contest

Dec 2024

Bedford Town Band

14th @ 2.00pm – TBC – Christmas Concert

Bedford Concert Brass

21st @ 6.30pm – St Marks Church Community Centre ,Bedford – Carols In The Car Park

24th @ 6.30pm – St Marks Church Community Centre, Bedford – Carols By Candlelight

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Our History

Bedford Town Band was formally formed on 13th April 1894, completed its first public engagement in Bedford the following month and entered in its first Contest (in Luton) on 18th August that year, winning two prizes (one reportedly for its playing of a quickstep, the other for its rendition of ‘Elixir of Love’).

The Band quickly became well established and in 1896 organised its own Contest. It was reported that 17 Bands entered and that some 1500 members of the public attended. The Band was popular and successful in the first half of the 20th Century but went through something of a fallow period after the Second World War, struggling initially to reform and, once it did, although continuing to compete, languishing for the most part in the lower sections.

That changed, though, and Bedford Town Band as we know it today took shape following the appointment of Mr Terry Hext as Musical Director, an eminent trombone player and Head of Brass Teaching in Bedfordshire. He took over the Band in the Fourth Section in 1974, but oversaw a meteoric rise that, in successive Regional Finals between 1977 and 1980 saw the Band crowned champions of the 4th Section, champions of the 3rd Section, runners-up in the 2nd Section, and then champions of the First Section. The Band competed predominantly in the Championship Section until Terry left the Band in 1988, since when it has largely been a First Section Band, although has found itself in the Second Section for the last 3 years.

In 1994 the Band celebrated its centenary and held a concert to celebrate in the Bedford Corn Exchange.  This was conducted by the Tenor Horn virtuoso Gordon Higginbottom, with guest stars Roy Castle and Steven Sykes, and Simon Groom as compère.  The Training Band and Second County Wind Band shared the stage, and the event was recorded for 3 Counties Radio. 

The band ran several successful Masterclasses in conjunction with the Music service, where the band organised stars from the brass playing world such as Roger Webster, Steve Sykes, Gareth Small, Sheona Wade, Bob Childs, Paul Mayes and David Thornton.

The year 2000 was an important year for the band. It moved to a new band room and started a new three band structure with a contesting band (Town Band), Concert Brass and Progress Brass bands. The Town Band won its area contest under John Berryman, which qualified it to compete in the First Section National Final at the Royal Albert Hall.  This also resulted in the band being promoted to the Championship Section, where it remained until 2004. There were promotions to Championship level again in 2008-2010 and 2013.  The band qualified to compete in National Finals again in 2011, 2019 and 2021.

In 2003, the band went on a memorable tour to Bamburg, the twin town of Bedford, in Germany, culminating in a concert in the Joseph Keilberth Concert Hall, home to the famous Bamburg Symphony Orchestra.  The band also recorded the first of a series of 3 CDs titled “The Spirit of Bedford”, so called after an especially commissioned march.  The band has twice been on tours to Malta as guests of the George V band in the town of Mqabba for the weeklong festival of the Feast of the Assumption. The band has also recorded in Maida Vale Studios for the BBC as part of a community music project which was broadcast on Radio 3.

2019 saw the 125th anniversary of the band, which again saw a celebration concert in the Corn Exchange with guest euphonium soloists Gary Curtin and David Thornton.

The Bedford Town Band is now under conductorship of Craig Patterson. The associated bands and learner groups – Concert Brass (largely adult, non-contesting Band), Progress Brass (mainly for our younger, developing players, but with some of the more ‘experienced’ players on hand to help out), plus the Academy Brass, Mature Learners and Wellbeing Brass groups, boasts over 60 players.

More of the band’s history (compiled by Barbara Summersgill for the Band’s centenary anniversary) can be viewed here: History Of Bedford Town Band

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Band Officials

President:Vacant
Vice Presidents:Michael Rose
Ian Smith
Chairman:Paul Riggett
Vice Chairman:Graeme Down
Secretary:Alice Muzzlewhite
Treasurer:Vikki Bean
Membership Secretary:Vikki Bean
Safeguarding Officer:Martin Orr
Town Band Managers:Gary Summerfield
Graham Young
Concert Brass Manager:Steve Gadsden
Progress Brass Manager:Alistair Staddon
Academy Manager:Peter Berrington
Librarian:Rosemary Fisher 
Assets Manager:Geoff Gaylor
Other Band Representatives:
(Trustees)
Karen Nutting
Mollie Muzzlewhite
Darren Smith
David Barlow
Gerrard Atkins
Avril Reeves