Band History

Established in 1892…

Pendeen Band was first formed in 1892 and was one of 40,000 then in existence across the UK.

Locally, there were drill halls in Newbridge and St. Buryan, which both had bands. In 1892 the foundation stone of Carnyorth (Board) School was laid. Soon after on 10th.January 1893, the Wheal Owles disaster happened. Pendeen church started an organ fund, for like St.Just, the hymns and psalms were accompanied by strings and woodwind. In the area, there were at least five bands. Pendeen was then classed as a part of St. Just and rarely had separate recognition.

Tea treats were the highlight of the year and the “Cornish Telegraph” of 20thJune 1892 records:- “On Midsummer Day the Weslyan Sunday School, led by the band of the Rifle Volunteers, followed by the Free Church School, cheered everybody with the strains of the band, lately formed under the leadership of Mr. Thomas H. Andrewartha, which appeared in public for the very first time. There was, of course the usual ‘Tea’.”

The following year the Rev. F. J. Horsefield came to Pendeen from Manchester, for a year and wrote ‘A Life in a Cornish Village’ and on page 82 we read. “Dissenters have their Sunday School parades accompanied by various bands, followed by tea parties on a large scale. On Midsummer Day the Church people hold their festival with the schoolchildren perambulating the district to the music of two brass bands, afterwards having buns and tea in a field opposite the Church – (fun, bonfires and gunpowder explosions) The hills resounded to the music produced by the bands”.

Pendeen Band played for the non-conformists. The organist at Carnyorth Free Church, Mr. J. H. Ellis, known locally as ‘Boy Jim Henney’, got the Pendeen band under way in 1892.

Some Notable Occasions

  • 1980 – Playing during HM The Queen’s visit, accompanied by Prince Philip and Prince Andrew, to Geevor Tin Mines
  • 1986 – The Band, with others, led a protest parade through Central London against the closure of Cornish Tin Mines.
  • The Cornish Gorsedd Award (1986).  Presented to the Band by the Grand Bard – a 28 inch Copper Shield awarded in recognition of successes in local and national competitions.
  • 1992 – Playing at the Service of Dedication and Naming Ceremony of the Sennen lifeboat ‘The Four Boys’ conducted by HRH The Duke of Kent.
  • 1997 – Leading a protest march through London against the closure of Cornish Hospitals.
  • 2012 – Entered the Whit Friday competition in Yorkshire.

The Bandroom

The band has occupied a variety of band rooms including a barn, an old smithy, Charlotte Warren’s kitchen in Trewellard (whose great-great-grandson, Jonathan Keverne, currently plays with the band), and the local Church Schoolrooms.

Later, a room with a chequered history in St. John’s Terrace, Pendeen, was purchased, which the band vacated when better accomodation was offered by the Geevor Mine management. When the mine was closed, the band came under the threat of eviction, but ‘squatted’ in this Geevor accommodation until the village playing field Trustees offered a building plot on a corner of their field.

Planning permission was sought and granted and a purpose built band room, which the band own, was built. Many thanks must be extended to all the local people who wrote so many letters of support and organised a well-subscribed petition supporting the band room project. Thanks are also due to the Trustees of Trewellard Chapel, St. John’s Ambulance, Pendeen and the Pendeen W.I., for their offer of temporary accommodation, if the band was evicted from Geevor before the band room was finished.

The new building was completed and the opening ceremony performed, by Mrs.H.Derrington, in September 1995. Mrs.Derrington, being a Trustee of both the playing field and the band, played an invaluable part in fundraising for the project.[/wpcol_1half_end]

Contest Achievements

YEAR VENUE POSITION CONDUCTOR TEST PIECE
1952 Stenalees First Capt.A.G.Richards Hymn-Eventide
March-Bridgewater
1953 Stenalees First Capt.A.G.Richards Golden Dawn
Second Judex
1954 Porthleven Second Rushworth Harry Remington
1955 Stenalees First J.R.Grand The Joy of Youth
First Deep Harmony
1960 Bugle First T.Chainey James Hook
1969 Bristol Third Telfor Rule Petit Suite De Ballet
1971 London-Finals Telfor Rule American Sketches
1973 Penzance Second Capt.A.G.Richards Neapoliton Suite for Brass
1983 Penzance Second Rushworth Harry Tancredi
1984 Penzance Second Rushworth Harry Winters Tale
1984 Falmouth Third in 4th. Rushworth Harry
1984 Truro —– Rushworth Harry Winters Tale
Fourth in 3rd Rushworth Harry Entertainment Contest
1985 Falmouth First in 4th. Rushworth Harry
Second in 3rd. Rushworth Harry
Second in 2nd. Rushworth Harry
1985 Penzance First Rushworth Harry Swiss Festival Overture
1985 Truro Second Rushworth Harry Swiss Festival Overture
1986 Truro Third Rushworth Harry A Rural Suite
1987 Truro Third Rushworth Harry Holiday Suite
1987 Penzance Second Rushworth Harry Holiday Suite
1988 Truro Second Rushworth Harry Episodes for Brass
1988 Penzance First Rushworth Harry Episodes for Brass
1989 St Austell First in 3rd. Rushworth Harry Coriolanus
Cup for winning Conductor
Second in 4th. Rushworth Harry Neapoliton Suite for Brass
1989 Bugle Second Rushworth Harry A Malvern Suite
1992 Bugle Second Rushworth Harry Suite for Switzerland
1992 Penzance First Rushworth Harry Suite for Switzerland
2004 Torquay Forth Brian Stevens A Malvern Suite
2006 Truro Third Simon Smith Holiday Suite
2008 Truro Second Steve Wearne Neapoliton Suite for Brass
2011 Tremough Campus Penryn Second Darren Jenkin Mexican Fiesta

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