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The New Buckenham Silver Band, one of the oldest silver bands in Norfolk, celebrates its 130th year

The New Buckenham Silver Band performing at their 130th year anniversary concert. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archive

The New Buckenham Silver Band performing at their 130th year anniversary concert. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archive

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An historical brass band which is thought to be one of the oldest in Norfolk has celebrated an anniversary milestone.

The earliest known image of the original New Buckenham Silver Band which was formed in 1887. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archiveThe earliest known image of the original New Buckenham Silver Band which was formed in 1887. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archive

Established in 1887 it is believed the New Buckenham Silver band was set up to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee.

And now 130 years on the band - which carried on playing through both the World Wars - is still charming villagers at fetes, events and concerts.

Tommy Wiser has been a member for 70 years, starting out as a nine-year-old, and plays the baritone horn.

“My father and my brother were in the band and they used to bring their instruments home,” he said.

The New Buckenham Silver Band wearing their first uniform in1922.  Picture: New Buckenham Society's archiveThe New Buckenham Silver Band wearing their first uniform in1922. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archive

“Me being a young boy, I used to get a note or two out of them and then I learnt from there.”

The 84-year-old described being part of the band as a “wonderful hobby” and said the enjoyment of it is what has made him continue to play.

He said: “I will be 85 next month and I shall keep coming here while I can keep playing and enjoying it.”

The band rehearses at the New Buckenham Village Hall and currently has 22 core members aged from their 20s to their 80s.

New Buckenham Silver Band leading a parade in the market place. The date is unknown. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archiveNew Buckenham Silver Band leading a parade in the market place. The date is unknown. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archive

To mark the anniversary a celebratory concert was held at the village hall last month.

Wendy Muncila, who plays the euphonium, met her husband in the band.

Her mother Penny Bott, 80, also plays after becoming inspired by her children’s involvement.

The 55-year-old said although it is a very social band the members are very passionate about it and music.

The New Buckenham Silver Band playing at a fete in 1973. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archiveThe New Buckenham Silver Band playing at a fete in 1973. Picture: New Buckenham Society's archive

“Even through the World Wars when it was just men playing and even when they were off fighting it still kept going,” she said. “That is why we want to keep it going.”

She said the village is “quite proud” of the band but there are concerns about its future.

“The only problem now is we don’t get many youngsters so there is the concern about keeping it going.”

Mrs Bott added: “We love the tradition and camaraderie. We don’t want to let it die. It cannot die.”

The band is looking for more members. A knowledge of music and ability to read it can be helpful but is not necessary. People can also choose to learn an instrument.

For more information search New Buckenham Silver Band on Facebook or visit the band’s website

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