Biking to Switzerland

Charlotte Birch : 16 September 2018 4:09 pm : Concert, Home, News, Switzerland, Youth Band

Members from Lions Youth Brass will be swapping the stage for the saddle as they prepare to cycle the distance between Sandbach and Montreux on static bikes.
The Lions Youth Brass team will be cycling around 790 miles, the distance from their Sandbach base to Montreux, in Switzerland, where the band will be competing at the European Youth Brass Band Championships.
The Lions qualified to represent the UK at the prestigious competition after scooping second place at the National Youth Brass Band Championships of Great Britain earlier this year.
It’s a fantastic achievement for the young band and has resulted in a major fundraising campaign to find the £25,000 it will cost to send around 50 young people as well as a team of tutors over to Switzerland.
With a number of fundraisers already under their belts, including race nights, bingo, and afternoon tea, the Lions will now be saddling up to see if they can complete a sponsored cycle to raise those all important funds.
Band members – and of course parents too, led by Jonathan Miles and Mick Ronald – will be cycling on a static bike at six of the upcoming concerts to raise money towards the total goal.
They will be at:
– From Sandbach to Switzerland, Northwich Memorial Hall, September 23
– Sandbach Makers Market, Sandbach Common, October 13
– Joint concert with Audley, Sandbach School, October 21
– Vale Royal Lions, Grange School, November 16
– Christmas Concert, Sandbach School, December 2
– Macclesfield Christmas Concert, St Paul’s Church Macclesfield, December 7
To keep up-to-date with all of the progress and upcoming events search for Lions Youth Brass on Facebook or @LionsYouthBand on Twitter.
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From Sandbach to Switzerland

Charlotte Birch : 12 September 2018 9:33 pm : Beginners Band, Concert, Contest, Home, Junior Band, News, Switzerland, Youth Band

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the movies as some of the county’s top musicians take you on a tour of the silver screen.

From John Williams to Hans Zimmer, Fodens Band, the Roberts Bakery Band, and Lions Youth Brass will be performing together for one night only for their From Sandbach to Switzerland concert. 

More than 100 of Cheshire’s top players will be helping to raise money for the Lions Youth Brass band as they prepared to head to Montreux, Switzerland for next year’s European Youth Brass Band Championships. 


The band qualified to represent England at the prestigious tournament after finishing second in the National Youth Brass Band Championships earlier this year. 


Performing alongside players from Fodens and Roberts will give the band – aged between 14 and 18 – a chance to perform with some of the country’s finest players. 


Musical director Nigel Birch said “Lions is about giving young people great opportunities and to play with musicians and bands of the quality of Roberts and Fodens will be an amazing experience for them to cherish.”


Players in the Lions organisation range from six to 18 years of age and both the beginner and junior bands will be showcasing their musical prowess before the main event on the night.


In order to enjoy their once in a lifetime trip to Switzerland Lions have to raise around £25,000 and have already held a series of fund-raising events this year. 


The ‘From Sandbach to Switzerland’ spectacular takes place on September 23 at Northwich Memorial Court. 


Tickets cost £10 with under 16s free of charge. Doors open 5.15pm. 


The next fund-raising event will be a race night at the Masonic Hall in Sandbach on September 29.

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Tour 2018: Day 6

Charlotte Birch : 29 July 2018 6:37 pm : Concert, Home, News, Tour, Youth Band
The final day started with a hearty cooked breakfast. Katie and Jane slaved over the cooker, supported by Steve, Charlotte and Julian. I even chipped in with the odd round of toast. This set us up nicely for a long day ahead.
We said our farewells to Brian as he set off early with Neil (Jane and Brian’s son) for his Hospital appointment.
Following a thorough cleanup, Jane and Katie always check our rooms to make sure it’s left to their very high standards, we set off home around 11am. Steve had now been promoted to van duty in Brian’s absence and to keep Derek on the straight and narrow.
Following a short stop off at Sandbach Park we made our way to the Bull’s Head where Jane and Katie had arranged for an end of tour roast dinner, there wasn’t much left on the plates as you can imagine.
It was here we said farewell to our great friends and coach drivers, Carol and Jose, as they couldn’t make the evening concert. Sophie Barwick presented them both with presents from the band.
It was now on to Sandbach High School for the evening concert organised by The Rotary Club of Sandbach.
This year there was a twist to the concert as I had given the choice of music to the six senior players that were leaving. In true Lions fashion they double twisted and I wasn’t allowed to know what we were playing until moments before the first note.
During the evening presentations were made to Sophie Barwick, Melissa Goodchild, Rhys Woollam, Emma Drew, Callum Hill and Natasha Brett as they had reached the ripe old age of 18 and now was the time for them to take one last bow.
There was a presentation made to Richard Gibson who had organised all the performances on tour and further presentations to Sophie and Rhys as retiring band reps.
The band kindly presented presents to myself, Jane and all the organising team for a great week.
One final presentation was for Sophie Barwick, who having given ten years of her life, and showed great dedication and leadership, was presented with Bandsperson of the Year.
The band was on great form all evening and finished traditionally with our special version of Can Can.
A great tour, with great memories. Thanks to everyone who made it a great success.
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Tour 2018: Day 5

Charlotte Birch : 26 July 2018 12:31 pm : Concert, Home, News, Tour, Youth Band

On Wednesday, we were woken up and headed off to Beverly. Our first concert was in Beverly Minster. What a beautiful acoustic! The sound after the last note lasted for seven seconds! Many band members say that it is the nicest place that they have ever played in.
We had a lovely lunch however there were no crisps, due to Leanne losing her phone down the side of the bed and Jane being preoccupied all morning! After all the fuss, all it took was one swipe of a hanger from Julian to save the day.
Then we went to our second concert. This was at a garden party where the audience enjoyed our playing and the band enjoyed strawberries and cream, then cake! Half way through our second set, Nigel made a comment about missing out on the strawberries. So the hilarious owner of the house went to get him some which he stood and ate (giving the band a break!).
When we arrived back at our accommodation, we were informed that tonight was “Talent Night”. Oh dear… Before the show we enjoyed curry and sweet & sour, followed by a healthy portion of angel delight. The winners of the talent show were Amy Hext and Cerys Smedley, with their tap routine “Beat Box”. The runners up were Hannah Taylor the future stand up comedian, and Mel, Sophie and Emma Stone with the “Mel the Genius” quiz about members of the organisation.
After the show we enjoyed our last hot chocolate and headed off to bed.
Ella & Leanne
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Tour 2018: Day 4

Charlotte Birch : 25 July 2018 7:23 am : Concert, Home, News, Tour, Youth Band

Yet again, we were woken by one of the wonderful adult helpers, this time Derek standing in for Brian on the pots and pans.

We then proceeded to play at Burton Agnes Hall and Gardens, which was very nice however, audience numbers were limited.

Our next stop was Filey on the bandstand. We attracted a large audience including a lovely couple with six border collies, which many of the band took a particular liking to.

We were treated to a selection of homemade cupcakes by Sophie’s Nanny and Grandad who had come to Filey for the day.

Then we moved on to Bridlington where we enjoyed a lovely tea from Audrey’s Fish & Chips, the resident seagulls also took a particular interest in our chips.

Rounders was then played on the beach whilst some of us watched the beginners and juniors in their sponsored blow (well done everyone). The game included lots of sibling rivalry with the stand out moment being Elena catching out her brother, Kai.

Batman and Robin aka Steve and Derek, thought it was very funny to add obstacles into the game and at one point removed the bases completely.

All in all, a very successful day!


Kai & Katy

Tour 2018: Day 4

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Tour 2018: Day 3

Charlotte Birch : 23 July 2018 10:01 pm : Concert, Home, News, Tour, Youth Band

Today we were woken up by Brian in the usual loud fashion, much to Rhys’ disgust as everyone else in the building heard and exclamation of “WHY BRIAN, WHHHYYYYY?!”

We left at around 9:45am for first concert at Sewerby Hall, we then moved on to Beverley city centre where we had an interesting of the Can Can at triple speed!

WE have since returned home to a dinner of Spaghetti Bolognaise followed by a classic game of rounders which resulted in one win for each team.

We are currently enjoying a boys vs girls football match, plus cake and hot chocolate.


Beth, Hannah & Liv

Tour 2018: Day 3

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Tour 2018: Day 2

Charlotte Birch : 23 July 2018 9:41 pm : Concert, Home, News, Tour, Youth Band


Day 2 started with another early start at 9:30am we headed off to Bridlington Life Boat Station, ready to perform three, hour long sets for a passing audience along the beach.

The sun was shining down and we played in what felt like a heatwave. During our performance, we were also accompanied by tuneful sea shanties performed by pirates (Who also supported the RNLI.

We finished our set with a tour of the newly built Bridlington Life Boat Station and their two brand new boats. We also got to see various operation rooms  where Daisy and Ollie were quick to dress up in a life jackets.

When we returned to the scout camp we had the challenge of the Sponsored Blow which was to perform 120 hymns without a break. We managed it in two hours and twenty four minutes. The whole event was live streamed to Facebook for your ‘enjoyment’.

Finally, we ended the day with a Mexican themed night. It was interesting to see the western led perspective of Mexico that was presented on the night through sombreros, moustaches and ponchos. Mr Barwick stole the show by bringing his donkey along for tea. The piñata at the end of the day brought to a close this themed night.


Tom, Anne & Jake


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Tour 2018: Day 1

Charlotte Birch : 21 July 2018 9:10 pm : Concert, Gallery, Home, News, Tour, Youth Band

After at 5:30 start this morning, it’s fair to say, we were all extremely tired. Three hours later, we arrived at our accommodation, some with more energy than others. We made our way to Hull Pride, where we were greeted by a vibrant and inclusive atmosphere.

We played for several hours, which was well appreciated by the audience. This included some Tour classics, solos ad the world premier of the piece by Iain McKnight – Which still has no name!

We then watched the parade and waved our Pride flags high! A surprise was in store for Emily, one of the band’s flugel players as it was her 17th birthday – her family, including Grandma, made the trip to Hull to watch the band play.

After this eventful day, we returned to our accommodation where we enjoyed our tea. We then played a few games of bingo which brought out the competitive streak in some. Our winners were; Daya, Katie, George, Eliza and Ryan.

We finished the day with Birthday cake and a final rendition of Happy Birthday for Emily.


Daya, Emily & Abbie


2018 Day 1 Hull

Tour 2018: Day One

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Photos for sale

Graham Shaw : 14 July 2018 8:23 pm : Beginners Band, Concert, Contest, Junior Band, News, Youth Band

As part of the band’s fundraising efforts for Switzerland, a large number of photos from recent concerts are available for sale. Photos are priced at £1 for a high resolution digital download and the band will get 66p from each photo purchased.

3 July 2018 All 3 bands Remembering Nell / Awards Concert –

7 July 2018 Junior Band Whiston Contest –

8 July 2018 All 3 bands Congleton Park –

8 July 2018 All 3 bands Macclesfield Lions –

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Bingo Night!

Charlotte Birch : 6 June 2018 9:07 pm : Contest, Home, News, Youth Band

Eyes down for a line and get those dabbers ready as Lions Youth Brass Band holds a fundraising bingo night to help raise money towards the European Youth Brass Band Championships next year.

A fantastic second place finish in April’s National Youth Brass Band Championships of Great Britain meant the young players secured their place in Europe’s top competition next year.

But in order to compete in the contest the organisation is having to raise around £20,000 to travel to Montreux in Switzerland with just under 40 young players ranging from 14 to 19.

It is an amazing opportunity for the Sandbach-based band but means a lot of fundraising will have to take place between now and next May.

The fundraising campaign begins with a bingo night at Haslington Cricket Club on Friday, July 13 – where the successful race night was held earlier in the year.

So come down, bring your friends, and help the band get to Switzerland so they can make the most of this amazing opportunity. Remember to click attending on the Facebook event.

Where: Haslington Cricket Club, Clay Lane, CW1 5SE – parking on site

When: Friday, July 13, starting 7.30pm.


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