HATHERLEIGH Silver Band are now officially one of the top 4th section brass bands in the country, after coming third at the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain.

The National Championships, held on September 17 at Cheltenham Racecourse, saw the band take third place winning a cash prize.

There were 19 bands in the section coming from as far afield as Dunfirmline and Crystal Palace. Hatherleigh were the only ones representing Devon in the 4th section competition. The piece performed by the band was Music from Kantara by Kenneth Downie.

A band spokesperson said: ‘We worked very hard in the run up to the contest. It takes a lot of commitment from all of the players and the enthusiasm and dedication of our musical director Matthew Green, who worked tirelessly on the piece outside of band practices. The hard work paid off!’

Matthew Green, who is also marine bandsman at Commando Training Centre Royal?Marines, Lympstone, had high hopes for Hatherleigh and he helped the band bring out detail and excitement in the piece of music, ensuring the members gave a good performance in a difficult acoustic setting.

The National Brass Band Championships, which is often referred to as ‘National’ involves some 600 bands in eight regional qualifying heats staged up and down the UK, plus two final national events.

The championships, which have existed since 1945 in their current format, are split into five sections, the championship section, and 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th sections.

The band were pleased to have done so well in their particular section and are now rehearsing for their next contest, the 70th South West Brass Band Championships 2016 at The English Riviera Centre in Torquay, which will take place on November 5.

The test piece is the Saddleworth Festival Overture by Goff Richards, which contains a lot of Australian melodies. The band are hoping to continue their successful run of results.

For more news, engagements and pictures of Hatherleigh Silver Band, visit their website www.hatherleighsilver band.co.uk.

For additional information call band secretary Jane Fawcett on 01837 810791.