Blidworth Welfare Band
Being an “Essex Girl” brass bands were not so prevalent in the South, however, Janice was lucky to attend a school where the Head of Music originated from Yorkshire and so the school and associated Youth Band were very strong. The school did annual tours to Europe which gave her experiences of traveling abroad and performing in some great venues as well as producing a couple of records.
Janice commenced her playing with a baritone and later moved over to Euphonium. After leaving school at 16 she transferred to Epping Forest Band and after a couple of years tried the Solo Horn chair following the retirement of the previous player. The band was quite successful in the contest field and performed in the gardens at Westminster Abbey every year.
When Janice moved up to the Midlands in 1982 her first stint was with Ilkeston Brass on Solo Horn followed by a transfer to Loughborough and then to Bestwood Black Diamonds. Once Janice’s family came along her playing days ceased except to cover on the timps at one contest and a session on flugel horn.
Janice’s long-term return to banding commenced at Blidworth when they were rehearsing at Forest Town awaiting the build of the new Welfare. In 1992 she moved to Nottingham City Transport Band on 1st Horn who were at the high end of the Championship Section at that time, performing at the Albert Hall Championships for 2 consecutive years. There were peaks and troughs over the following 12 years as all bands experienced and they finally merged with Carlton Brass. Janice was out of the circuit for a while and even had a session on trumpet playing in a pit orchestra for an amateur show at the local theatre! This led to her joining Newstead Brass for a few years starting on back row and later onto 1st Horn, where they won many prizes and moved up the rankings in the Championship Section.
After leaving Newstead, Janice had an unsettled spell playing with several bands but returned to Blidworth where she has been for the past 5 years taking up the 1st Horn chair resuming an allegiance with an old buddy from Newstead Brass days!!
Blidworth Band has seen 3 generations of Janice’s family from grandad to son to grandson – a true community organisation with great vision.