Black Dyke Band
In 1816 Peter Wharton founded a brass and reed band in the Yorkshire village of Queenshead – later to become Queensbury. John Foster, apart from being the founder of Black Dyke Mills, played French Horn in this band. It has been said on many occasions that Black Dyke was formed from it; however this is not strictly true, as “Peter Whartons band went out of existence through loss of members”. In 1833 a new band was formed named ‘Queenshead Band’, which may well have contained players from the former band.
Black Dyke Band is the most recorded band in the world with over 300 recordings and growing every year. It is also the most successful contesting band in the world having won the European Championships eleven times, most recently in 2005, the British Open no fewer than 29 times (most recently 2006) and the National Championships of Great Britain 22 times (most recently 2008 and 2009). In June 2009 the band became Champion Band at the English National Championships.
In December 2005 a unique partnership was formed when Black Dyke Band and Leeds Metropolitan University joined together, building upon the success of the university’s cultural links with Opera North, Northern Ballet Theatre, Harrogate International Festival and the West Yorkshire Playhouse. This partnership will form a strategy for long-term support.
In August 2007 the Band were invited to take part in the BBC Promenade Concerts, at the Royal Albert Hall, London
In 2006 as part of its initiative to sponsor the work of young people, Black Dyke Band, under the guidance of Dr. Nicholas Childs assisted by qualified members, formed the Yorkshire Youth Brass Band. The purpose is to inspire and motivate young people aged 11 to 18 years to achieve their full potential as musicians, composers and citizens.