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Norwich Citadel band reunite to mark 125 years

CitadelBandAnniversaryWebOCT 07
The Norwich Citadel band of The Salvation Army hosted a reunion concert and dinner at The Citadel in St. Giles' Street on October 27 to celebrate its 125th year.

Former members were encouraged to come along and take part in a special performance and included in the revamped line-up were two players who have gone on to great success, namely James Maynard and Alwyn Green, trombonists with The London Symphony Orchestra and The Birmingham Symphony Orchestra respectively.

Michael Wybrow, manager of the band, said the atmosphere between members meeting up, some for the first time in more than 20 or 30 years, had been fantastic.

He said: “There has been a tremendous air of excitement about it all, everyone has been so overjoyed at seeing their old friends and coming back to the city. It has just been wonderful.”

The band was formed in 1882 following a visit by General William Booth, founder of The Salvation Army, who came to preach at the newly opened corps church based in a former roller skating rink, which was just in front of the St Giles' Hall which the Salvation Army band still occupies today.

After Mr Booth urged people to “Get a drum and rouse Norwich from one end to the other”, instruments were purchased and a band was formed and by December 1882 it was heard playing and marching through the city's streets.

As well as its work in Norwich, the band has also played in venues across the world, including London's Royal Albert Hall, the Royal Festival Hall, the concert hall of the University of Cape Town and the Centennial Memorial Temple in New York City.

Peter Massan, who travelled to the reunion from Bristol and was a trombone player in the band from 1966 to 1972, said: “When I first came here I was a young lad in my 20s and was a little unsure of everything, but everyone was so kind and welcoming.

“I struck up instant friendships which have lasted through the years. I am just pleased I have been able to make it up here to see everyone again.”

Today, the band provides music for many civic, church and cultural events including the annual Lord Mayor's Civic Service and the Remembrance Day Parade.


Pictured above are David Woodrow and Charles King joining in the concert.


Story and picture courtesy of www.eveningnews24.co.uk

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