The History of Lostwithiel Town Band
The Band has been in extistance since at least 1885 when it was under the baton of Nathaniel Prideaux and going by the name of the Band of the Lostwithiel detachment of the East Company rifle volunteers. In 1885 they were mentioned as leading the flora dance for the regatta ball at the Royal Talbot hotel ball room. At the outbreak of war, the instruments were put into storage at the Guildhall.
There they stayed until 1922 when a group of young people including Dick Parsons, Herbie Eyres and Norman Chapman approached the Borough Council under Mayor John Beswarrick with a request to discharge the instruments to them in order that they could form a Town band. The request was granted and Mr E. Russel, the Church organist and Mr Wevell undertook the instruction of players. After 6 months the band was able to perform its first concert and by 1936 was looking to buy a set of uniforms. In May 1937 the new uniforms were worn for the first time at the coronation celebrations of George VI. The Town Museum has a poster for the 1939 Carnival and Regatta organised by the Lostwithiel Borough Band and sadly cancelled due to the outbreak of world war 2.
When war came again, the Lostwithiel band temporarily disbanded as many of its members had been ‘called up’ to serve in H.M. Armed Forces. The returning members reformed the band in 1946, known as Lostwithiel Silver Band and began competing again that year. Post war success saw the Band at the opening of the Tamar bridge in 1962and for the opening of County hall in Truro by the Queen in 1966.
Lostwithiel Band at Stenalees contest late 50's
Bugle Contest 1961
W.D. Lawton conducting
"Call of the sea"
1988 saw the Band face a major upheaval when the success of its youth policy resulted in the excellent youth Band, started in 1970, going its own way under the title of Lostwithiel '88 Band. This resulted in the presence of two bands in the town. However this was unsustainable and in 1997 the bands came back together as Lostwithiel Town Band.
The history of Lostwithiel Town Band has been long-lasting and at times very turbulent, but the overriding factor is that it has survived and has endeavoured to preserve the success and resilience of its members, whilst doing so; it has captured a portion of history, education and pleasure in order to pass onto a new generation to represent the community of Lostwithiel Town.