Thurrock Marching Brass crowned 2016 British Cadet Class Champions
The young members of Thurrock Marching Brass, more than 60% of whom had never competed at a National Championships before, set sail for Telford Football Club on Saturday 1 October. By ‘set sail’ we really mean that, as of all the days to break what has been a spectacular few months of blistering sunshine, the heavens decided that Nationals day would be that day. It was torrential rain pretty much all the way, but we were always hopeful that for the nine minutes slot that our talented youngsters were to perform in the sun would break through and shine on them.
We must have spent all our lucky tokens where the weather is concerned, because the heavens were not going to yield from the down pouring that had preceded the previous 8 hours and as the scenery crew got everything ready, it was clear that the last competitive performance of the year for the young stars was going to be in conditions that would really test their resolve.
Seeded third going into championships, it was going to take something special for the production of “Under New Management” to shine through and challenge the top two seeded cadet programs.
We are from Essex though, and the borough of Thurrock and surrounding areas has always built courage in its youngsters to just naturally drop their shoulder and plough on regardless of the obstacle in front of them. This stock of incredibly talented, tight knit TMB family members did just that. Smiles in the face of such conditions sent a clear message to anyone watching them that the very wet conditions were merely a minor inconvenience to them sharing the fun and excitement of their program. They delivered their best performance of the production this year and to genuine support from all quarters of the spectators.
Due to the conditions, the final retreat was called for just the Drum Majors and Guard Captains to be on the field for the results to be announced. Such a brilliant atmosphere in the Telford Football Stadium stands which was bulging with marching members from all bands on the day as they cheered for their drum majors and guard captains while they took their position on the field.
For the Cadet class, there are five individual awards plus the medal positions. When the first individual award of Colourguard was announced as going to Thurrock Marching Brass, there was a roar and cheer like no other from the stands. The second award for Visual Detail was then also awarded to Thurrock Marching Brass with equal response from the crowd. Music Detail was awarded to Cadence Juniors Drum & Bugle Corps, long time friendly rivals of Thurrock Marching Brass, which was also received with great aplomb from the audience. Only the two effect captions remained, the first of which was the Visual Effect, which was awarded to Thurrock Marching Brass. Three out of the four individual captions being awarded to the TV stars from Thurrock Marching Brass. With a long pause, the announcer then read out the winner of the Music Effect award to, Thurrock Marching Brass. Four out of the five individual caption awards going to the incredible talents of the boroughs own youngsters.
With an excited crowd the announcer then arrived at the medal positions. In third position, and bronze medal place, Cadence Juniors Drum & Bugle Corps, who also won the British Youth Band Association Cadet Class League title, so our congratulations to everyone involved for an excellent achievement on both counts.
The whole audience showed their appreciation for Cadence Juniors and then settled down to hear the results for silver and gold. You could almost hear a pin drop as the announcer toyed with the audience to create an air of anticipation that had everyone holding their breath. Would their best performance of the season be good enough for the youngsters of Thurrock, or would second seeded band Warwick Girls be crowned British Cadet Class Champions.
In second place, and silver medal, with a score of 53.75. A long pause and then the announcer said “Warwick Girls” with cheers from all areas of the stadium that were both for Warwick Girls magnificent achievement and silver medal plus from the realisation that Thurrock Marching Brass had done it. They had won Gold!
As the crowd settled, the announcer proclaimed that with a score of 64.5 points, the 2016 British Youth Band Association Cadet Class British Champions were THURROCK MARCHING BRASS!!
There were no chances of hearing any pins dropping at that announcement, and throughout the appreciative audience there were genuine cheers of congratulations for our talented youngsters.
A third British Championship win since their re-launch on 18 October 2010 but one in which they achieved with 60% of the marching members never having marched at a National Championships before. A great way to top an incredible year of experiences that will certainly last a lifetime for the members, with so many more yet to come.
Thurrock Marching Brass couldn’t be any prouder of this magnificent achievement.
Corps Director, Jay Lindner says of the win “I really don’t know where to start with this achievement as some doubted it would happen with so many new faces on board, but I can tell you, and anyone else who dares to doubt the resolve of the youngsters who come through our ranks, if you build an environment that balances good solid socially acceptable values, discipline and fun, anything is possible. That’s what we have at Thurrock Marching Brass from the Board, who I cannot thank enough for my appointment and support throughout this past year, to my incredible staff who dedicate their time for the benefit of our youngsters week in week out and our parent base, who have been the best support anyone in my position could ever ask for. British Champions. That certainly has a fantastic ring to it, and one that everyone should be proud of. After enjoying the experience we now turn our focus onto the next set of experiences for our youngsters. The first of which is Millie’s Concert on 7 October which looks set to be an incredibly rewarding and entertaining night for great causes. But before closing, I want to say a massive well done and congratulations to a bunch of youngsters from Thurrock and surrounding areas, WELL DONE…. YOU DID IT!!! So proud of you all!”