THE Rotary Brass Band Concert is an established Christmas tradition and has been another sell-out success – 198 tickets were sold for this charity fund-raiser with the Ellington Colliery Brass Band.
The event, at Morpeth Methodist Church, raised a record total of £1,446.
Musical Director Jonathan Fenwick excelled in conducting the band for a fresh mix of old favourite Christmas numbers and heartfelt carols.
As usual, the stage was full of excellent musicians, each playing their best in a superb demonstration of teamwork.
As usual, someone got very close to the edge of the stage, but Jonathan demonstrated a fine musical balance and did not fall off.
Mayor of Morpeth Joan Tebbutt and Mayor’s Escort Alison Byard were guests of honour, along with the new Methodist Minister, the Reverend Gary Ridley and his wife.
Money raised this year is mainly going to the WaterAid charity. It was set up in 1981 by the UK water industry as a response to the UN International Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Decade.
Its aim is to transform lives by improving access to safe water, effective sanitation and hygiene education in the poorest countries of the world. Just £15 is enough to help one person gain access to all three for life.
At present 844million people do not have access to safe water, 2.6billion do not have access to adequate sanitation and 1.4million children die each year by drinking unclean water.
Money raised will provide donations to the band, the Methodist Church and to Inner Wheel, which arranged the refreshments.
The target for WaterAid was £750, but it will now receive more than £1,000.
Rotary President Jim Dunn thanked organiser Alan Clark, Chairman of International Service, and his team of Rotarians, members of Morpeth Inner Wheel and church members. They got the church ready in the afternoon, organised refreshments for the band and for visitors, and cleared away afterwards ready for the Sunday morning service.
He also thanked the band and the wonderful support of local people for making the Christmas donations possible.
Rotary had already offered the proceeds of a raffle to the band to buy a junior euphonium and arrangements were made to present a cheque to the band on the night of the concert.
The Rotary fund was doubled by Rotary International and so the cheque presented was enough to buy the euphonium and another brass practice instrument to be used by beginners.
Young musicians now train with the band at their rehearsal rooms in Morpeth.