Barton-upon-Humber is steeped in history as we know, and this includes it’s brass band heritage. Barton has been fortunate enough to have had a brass band for 150 years, beginning life as the Barton Cycle Works Silver Band with a few name changes over the years to finally becoming Barton Community Band, many of the members who are playing for you this evening.
The early days can be traced back to a couple of bands within the community. Barton Ropery Brass Band, formed in late 1858. This was associated with Hall's Ropery Works in Barton and active in 1859 when it performed a concert with the Hull Druids' Brass Band in Barton Temperance Hall. Under the baton of conductor Stephen Akester in the mid-1860s through to the mid-1890s. Taking over the baton was conductor Mr Grainger in 1896, A.G. Franklin in 1904. The band was reformed in 1873 and known as Barton Model Band through the 1880s into the 1900s. There is mention of a Mr Doughty, a cornet player in the band at the time of his death in an accident at Barrow Mill in July 1902. The secretary at that time was a Mr Arthur Franklin in 1902-1903
The Barton Cycle Works Brass Band, Barton-on-Humber, Lincolnshire was also active in 1893. A successor band was formed in 1898 when Richard Weston, a member of Kettering Rifles Band, moved to Barton and joined the Elswick Hopper Brass Band playing the Tuba. Richard worked for Elswick Hopper cycle manufacturers at Barton-upon-Humber as a labourer in tube and sheet-metal working and brazing. In 1880 Fred Hopper had established a cycle repair business in a former blacksmith's shop in Brigg Road, Barton-upon-Humber. He went on from repairing cycles to manufacturing them. The business flourished and by 1905 it employed over 400 people. The business grew and it moved to larger premises on Marsh Lane. F. Hopper and Co. had a large three storied building built on the corner of Holydyke and Brigg Road for offices, where the wrapping and packing was done on Brigg Road ready for export. By 1912 the company was exporting to places such as Australia, Japan, India and South Africa. Barton Cycle Band was founded in 1898, by John Furniss, with the support of Fred Hopper, owner of the works. The Bandmaster Mr Furniss took the reigns in 1900 with the band still active in 1903. Following this, a successor band was formed in 1904 still called Barton Cycle Works Brass Band and was formed in 1904 by Mr F Hopper Snr. The conductor in 1905 was a gentleman called George White. The band had many successes in competition, the most notable being the contest held at the Crystal Palace in London where they gained a 3rd and 4th place in the years around 1907. Unfortunately on another occasion they had a few too many trips to the Public Bar and acted with an "unfortunate lack of sobriety" disgracing themselves on the contest platform. This caused their sponsor, F Hopper to gather them in the Cycle Works yard confiscating their instruments and ritually burning their uniforms before them - an inglorious end to a once fine band! (Information from “The works brass band – a historical directory of the industrial and corporate patronage and sponsorship of brass bands” by Gavin Holman, January 2020)
The band changed it’s name in 1950’s to Barton Silver Band and then again in 1970’s to Barton Town Band.
Now under the baton and guidance of Garry Oglesby, Barton Community Band goes from strength to strength. Following several successes on the contest platform, they regularly perform throughout the country, holding concerts with celebrity guest soloists including the international saxophonist Snake Davis as well as choirs, a recent one being York Philharmonic Male Voice Choir. On two occasions, the band has also visited Barton’s twin town, Feyzin in France.
In 2010 Barton Town Band started a new project, the Barton Community Band. The Community Band was developed so players retiring from the Barton Brass Band would still have somewhere to play as it progressed through the sections.
As well as performing in its own right, the Barton Community Band branched out into encouraging young people to learn instruments and become part of the band. Part of the band’s mission is to provide music education for the local community. Today, it partners with Hull Music Hub, which encourages young people to participate in music. It is hoped that a scheme to offer music tuition can be developed further so that all children and young people have the opportunity that music can bring. Proof of this is in a recent event in which some of our youth members participated with Grimethorpe Colliery Band at their youth workshop in Hull. Some of them were invited to play with the world-famous band in their evening concert which proved to be an inspiring experience.
The Barton Community Band is an intrinsic part of the community of Barton. As well as performing in concerts, they get involved in various projects such as: playing for the elderly residents in care homes at Christmas and supporting Armistice Day remembering those who gave their lives for us. The band members have also put together an Oompah Band that has performed at various beer festivals and Oktoberfest events in the local area.
If you would like to become involved then please get in touch with our band secretary:
Stuart Ross at firstname.lastname@example.org