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The Amazing Grace Notes

Newsletter for Olney Brass and Friends
including Beginner Band and Open Band

Some reminders from 1985

Olney Middle School choir were guests at our 1985 concert in Olney Church

and were led by Mrs Joan Parkin who still supports the band and was

instrumental in helping many of our members to start playing brass.

Present day

This year’s carolling season got underway last Thursday with the band playing carols for the

late night shopping in Olney. It’s good to think that we can start the festive season in the town

from which the band now gets its name. For some of us, it was the start of yet another year

but for a couple of players from the Beginner Band it was the first taste of what’s to come. As

usual its a packed programme of events and we rely very much on friends, family and past

players to help play and collect, so if you are free on any of these dates do please pop along.


Our Christmas concert this year takes in a new format - a drop in between 3 and 5 pm see



After nearly a decade on the front row Matt Atkinson has decided to leave for pastures new - in his letter to the band he wrote ‘I would like to express my gratitude to each member of the committee, as well as the entire band, for the warmth and friendship extended to me during my tenure. I have learned a great deal and have many cherished memories to carry forward.’ He joins Towcester Studio Band from 1st October where he will be playing with his mother and father in law. During his time with the band he has helped us to a number of first place victories, two Cheltenham finals and promotion to the Second Section.

In the meantime we are delighted that Sara Stokes Cawte, who has been playing in the band for a number of years has agreed to be our new principle. She is no stranger to the seat and has stepped in on various occasions before -this time, however, Sara will be on the top chair permanently. Her cornet playing has always been of a consistent high standard and she is looking forward to her new responsibility. No stranger to solo playing Sara plays Last Post at our regular Armistice Service, plays front row for the famous Boobs and Brass Band and is currently helping with our feeder bands where her daughter plays horn.

We send both players our good wishes.


Just for fun


Following the success of our concert

with the Oxford Male Voice Choir, we

present our Autumn Fireworks


Join us for an evening of music

relating to the season without the

need to stand outside in the cold.


Handel’s Firework Music

Ritual Fire Dance

Fire in the Blood

Olney family of bands will join to

perform Stravinsky’s Firebird

Have your say:-

50th Anniversary Concert

The programme for our 50th Anniversary Concert could be in

your hands. If you remember a particular piece that you

enjoyed playing as a member maybe you‘d like us to include it.

Let us know!


Beginner Band News

We are happy to welcome to the Olney Brass Family our new Beginner Band players who started in September. Many are from local schools and it’s particularly pleasing to see a family group of mum, daughter and son start together. The Beginners are working through the Olney Brass ‘Learn to Play Brass’ programme and they will be making their first public appearance in the Foyer at the St. Peter and St. Paul Church, Olney on Saturday 4th November 7pm, at the Band’s ‘Firework Concert’ when they will be entertaining the audience prior to the start at about 6:30pm.

The Beginners’ Band meets on Tuesday evenings from 6-6:30pm at Ousedale School, Newport Pagnell. For further information contact

Thinking of taking up your instrument again - we’d love to hear from you

Suitable candidates for Olney Band on Sop, Rep or bass (other players considered)

or anyone wishing to brush up their playing skills come along to Open Band


Olney Brass's Annual Summer Showcase, where all of our bands, along with guests from

Tickford Primary School, came together to perform to each other and an almost packed

Ousedale School hall, a selection of music.

Kate from senior band performs the Acrobat in front of her peers!

There were also solos and duets by some of the musicians involved of a wide variety of

standards, some playing in front of an audience for the very first ever time!

The event was new to the Olney Brass calendar, a concept devised and orchestrated by David Rose, and was a huge success and is sure to feature again next year and beyond.

Obviously a favourite solo as we see Philip Peake former player in an earlier rendition under the direction of David Greig (late 70's)

Busy Summer season always comes with the prospect of a March

Here are a few images depicting how we fared over the years!

This event in Old Stratford was the Palm Sunday parade, leading the congregation around the town. Hymn 'All Glory Laud and Honour' for the 14th time!!!

Leading the Newport Pagnell Carnival for several years

This year, however, we had to resort to playing on the back of a low loader!

Upcoming Events
Where to see the band

Sunday 3rd September -

Emberton Fete, Playing

Field, Hulton Drive

Saturday 9th September -

Joint concert with Oxford

Welsh Male Voice Choir

St |Peter and St Paul

Olney 7.30pm

Saturday 4th November

Autumn Concert - details

in next issue

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