About Us

Welcome to the Home of the Britannia Concert Band which was established in 1866 in Londonderry and has been performing various concerts all over Ireland since.

Our program covers a wide variety of music from marches, big band classics, folk, classical and showstoppers.

We are available for all types of engagements, please contact us for more information.

We hope you enjoy your visit to the site and get a flavour of the life of a Concert Band in this part of the world.

Events

For information on
upcoming events please visit our Facebook Page

Rehearsals

Junior Band

Tuesday's 7:00 to 7:45 at
Lisneal College

Senior Band

Tuesday's 7:45 to 9:45 at
Lisneal College

Officers

President
Jack Henderson

Vice Presidents
Stanley Alexander
Doug Curry
Brendan Devlin
Jim Goodman
Ken Goodman
Victor Goodman
Robert Harte
Colin Laird
William Temple

Chairperson
Joanne Campbell

Honorary Secretary
Petra Steltner

Assistant Honorary Secretary
Alan Goodman

Honorary Treasurer
Rhonda Dunn

Assistant Honorary Treasurer
John Smith

Librarian
Barbara McArthur

Assistant Librarian
Chris Burry

Musical Director
Stewart Smith

Assistant Musical Directors
Robert Goodman
Olivia Goodman

Committee Members
Martyn Goodman
Olivia Goodman
Dee Hannaway
Robert Goodman

Trustees
Jim Goodman
Stanley Alexander
Harry Allen

History

The Recent Years

The band was on a high in the early 60's taking in Firework Displays in Portrush, the St.Columba services in Gartan Co.Donegal and Christmas concerts with the local Oratorio Society.

Alban Goodman retired as conductor in 1969, after over 50 years service and was succeeded by his son Ken. From this time onwards the band concentrated on cabaret, concerts and competitions.

Triumphs were recorded at the NIBA Championships and at the Dublin International Festival. In September 2004 the band released its latest recording: "... and the band played on."

For the 140th anniversary in 2006 we received the commissioned work “Festival Overture” written for us by Philip Stopford. In 2010, the band released another recording: "Britannia Gold" followed by a live recording from ShowStoppers in 2014

The entire history of the band to the present day can be read in the book "History of the Britannia Concert Band", written by Jim Goodman and Ian Bartlett released in 2017.

The band is going from strength to strength under Conductor Stewart Smith, with every year bringing us new members.

The Early years

According to the Londonderry Guardian of 1866 the Britannia started life as a flute band, uniformed and carrying crimson banners with the Derry arms.

In 1876 it changed to Brass and then in 1881 it became Brass and Reed. The first known photograph was taken on Derry walls in 1881.

Reports in papers of the day describe the band attending the traditional celebrations, playing at regattas (even being towed along in a barge) and performing at the laying of the foundation stone of the Apprentice Boys Memorial Hall.

The Twentieth Century

A photo of 1905 shows the band as winners of a cup at the Londonderry Feis and includes members whose descendants are still actively involved.

Sir Edward Carson visited the city in 1912 and was led across the bridge by the 'Britannia'. Many reports appear in the local press of the 'Twenties' with the band entertaining at sports days, soirees, Ballyarnet Races and more regattas.

We have a beautiful programme of the Band sharing a concert with the Ulster Amateur Flute Band in the Guildhall in 1932. Three years later the Britannia Hall was built by its own members and requisitioned by the Canadian Navy during the war.

New uniforms (£15 each) and instruments were purchased in the early Fifties and photos show the band increasing in strength.

The Queens Award

As of June 2nd, 2018, The Band is delighted to receive the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in recognition of its contribution to the cultural life of the city through performances at civic, charity, entertainment and religious events. This Award is equivalent to the MBE for organisations and is a tribute to not only the present membership, including our Junior Section, but also to the hundreds of former members who have served the Band during its long history of over 150 years.

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British Empire Medal Award

The Officers and Members, wish to extend our warmest and sincere congratulations to Ken Goodman and Jim Goodman, on receiving the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to Music through the Britannia Concert Band

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