The Later Years


The early 1980s saw the formation of the Parents Association.The Association supported the band in many ways, but mainly by raising money for band funds.

The band took part in concerts with some well known celebrities, including Geoff Love, Stan Boardman and Ken Dodd,  but the band sadly had to say goodbye to the Elephant Hotel in 1985, and moved to the Lingholme.

17th June 1989 was a noteable date for the band, not because they were playing at a concert in St Annes Church Rainhill, but because on that same day 4 of the ex-band members were playing at the Trooping of the Colour ceremony in London – they were Andrew and Stuart Henderson, in the Scots Guards, Stephen Davies in the Welsh Guards, and Kevin McHale in the Coldstream Guards.

In December 1991 the band said farewell to an old friend and mentor, as Fred Matthias decided to retire as Musical Director after nearly 20 years service in the band. – he was replaced briefly by Colin Moore, and then John Perry took over as Musical Director.

In 1992 the band celebrated its 20th Anniversary with a concert at St Helens Town Hall.  The band again moved location, firstly to the Triplex Club Knowsley Road St Helens in 1998, then to the St Helens Cricket Club Ecceleston in 2001.

Norman Frost took over as Musical Director in 2001, and greatly improved the ability of the band with his love of the older musicals particularly those arranged by W J Duthoit.

Norman was followed as MD by Iain Dickie, who first conducted the band at a Ruritanian Ball in the Victoria Museum Liverpool in December 2011.  Iain was followed by Ola Ness, MD from 2017 until 2019 when he sadly had to leave us to move to Germany.  Peter Ledder then became MD until covid struck.  Fortunately we have a new MD Jim Cooke who took up position in June 2021 when the band restarted after more than a year’s gap in rehearsal.

Another momentous event in 2021 was the resignation of John Henderson after serving 49 years as Band Chairman – he has been elected to the position of Honorary President, and he will still be part of the band.