Sidmouth Town Band restarts search for new base

PUBLISHED: 06:30 30 July 2016

Sidmouth Town Band in 2016

Sidmouth Town Band in 2016

KYLE BAKER

The lack of grant funding means a £350,000 new HQ is out of reach for Sidmouth Town Band - but it will keep looking for alternative accommodation.

Chairman Martin Cordy thanked the community for its support to the tune of £13,000, as he revealed that the band’s grant applications had proved unsuccessful.

The band has now reluctantly told the United Reform Church (URC) it will be unable to purchase its town centre premises – and so its search begins again.

Martin said: “The support of the people of Sidmouth, and the work by the friends group, has shown what can be achieved in a short space of time.

“We would like to reassure everyone who has got behind the band’s vision that this is not the end of the road, and any monies donated will be used to develop any premises that are acquired in the future.”

The 150-year-old band, which has outgrown its Woolcombe Road HQ, launched its appeal in January to fund a new base – somewhere it can rehearse, perform, teach promising performers and store its instruments and extensive musical library.

The URC seemed ideal, but without grant funding it will be unable to continue with the purchase.

The band is now following a number of new leads, including one ‘very promising opportunity’, and will provide a further update in due course.

In the meantime, the performers will continue to raise funds for a new band room.

Musical director Adrian Harvey said “The band needs a new rehearsal space to continue to improve and to ensure that there is a future for the band within Sidmouth.

“The band provides regular, excellent concerts throughout the year, bringing in tourism to the town, and also provides much-needed free musical tuition.

“The acquisition of premises that can be tailored to the band’s needs will ensure that there is a town band in Sidmouth for the next 100 years.”

Anyone interested in supporting the band in finding new premises, please contact Martin Cordy on 07739 874 531.

Supporters can also become a friend of the band by visiting www.sidmouthtownband.co.uk, or register the band as your nominated charity through www.easyfundraising.org.uk

The band will be playing at various times during FolkWeek, including its regular Sunday slot at Connaught Gardens, from 8pm.

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