Eynsford Concert Band in Lavaux St Anne!

This evening the Eynsford Concert Band, on a whistlestop tour of Belgium, played a wonderful concert in one of the old barns surrounding the ancient Château of Lavaux St Anne, just north of the Ardennes forest. The whole thing was such good fun I really don’t know where to begin. The band, all amateurs playing to an extraordinary degree of professionalism, clearly get on so well with one another and brought an infectious sense of good fun with them. They also brought a mobile party, in the form of several crates of excellent Kentish beer, generously shared with the audience after the concert. The ancient and beautiful surroundings of the Château, combined with the skill of conductor John Hutchins, brought out the best in them. Everybody was on song, not least the brilliant clarinet soloist, Linda Merrick. The programme included Sea Hawk (Korngold), Gallimaufry (Woolfenden), Ellerby’s Clarinet Concerto, Bugs (Cichy) and Wagner’s Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral. But to my mind, up there level-pegging with Linda’s brilliant solo, was the band’s rendering of Nigel Clarke’s Heritage Suite, with the composer in the audience (my ‘What Hope Saw’, written to accompany the Suite, got a little outing but was, I suspect, surplus to requirements). Afterwards, there was a reception at which it became clear that everybody, audience and musicians, had thoroughly enjoyed themselves. When the Band’s coach set off back to Brussels it left behind an audience clearly so very happy to have been part of a night to remember in Lavaux St Anne.


  1. Brian

    What a fantastic time we all had, the band will remember this evening with great affection for many years. The poem will never be surplus to requirements, it helps tie the whole thing together. Let’s hope we have another collaboration in the not too distant future.

  2. Steven Drury

    Actually Martin, your ‘What Hope Saw’ was very appropriate to Nigels work and was not ‘surplus to requirement’.
    Your wonderful historical talk about the European Community to us was informative enough to change my mind on the EU.

  3. Stephen Bennett

    Many thanks for all your help and support, it was a fantastic location with a very warm and friendly audience.We had a great time, look forward to the next one.

  4. Angela

    We all had a wonderful time, and it was a pleasure to play, especially in such beautiful surroundings. We’re glad the audience enjoyed themselves as we certainly did. To me the poem is part of Heritage Suite, so it completed our performance of Nigel’s piece. It was a memorable evening.

  5. Angela

    We all had a wonderful time,and it was a pleasure to play. We’re glad the audience enjoyed themselves as we certainly did. To me the poem completed the performance of Nigel’s piece. It was a memorable evening.

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