Pangbourne is a village of about three thousand inhabitants, situated on the south bank of the River Thames at its confluence with the River Pang and about five miles west of Reading. The history of the band begins in 1893 when a fife and drum band used to rehearse in a shed behind the water mill. During the First World War the band dispersed but it is thought to have played at the celebrations of the Armistice in the River Meadow in 1919.
From then until the outbreak of the Second World War the band had a very eventful history and gave concerts on Saturday evenings in the Village Square until increasing motor traffic dispersed them. It gained the title of Pangbourne Silver Prize Band because of its successes in district competitions.
During the Second World War many of the bandsmen served in the Armed Forces and the instruments were held in storage. The Rector of Pangbourne appealed in 1948 for the band to be re-formed but this did not happen until 1962, when the late Mr Henry Fuller began giving lessons to six children in his home. It was then that the old instruments were recovered and local brass players came forward to help. At Christmas in 1963 the children collected eight pounds from carol playing. A small committee was formed to start up the band and the eight pounds became the first deposit in the new band's account. Within six years the band had grown to full size and was able to take part in contests, with notable successes.
On 19 September 1987 a concert and social evening was held in the Village Hall to celebrate twenty-five years of happy banding and many past and present members attended. Similarly, the Fortieth Anniversary 'Pangbourne Past and Present' was celebrated on 5 October 2002 with a concert given by fifty past and present players, with the late Don Lusher as guest trombonist.
The band has made a number of overseas concert tours in recent years: 1987 - Bitz Easter Festival, Baden-Wurtemberg (Germany); 1991 - Handel Brassband Festival, Noord-Brabant (Netherlands); 1999 - German Rhineland; 2001 - Salzburg (Austria); 2005 - Wernigerode, Sachsen-Anhalt (Germany). Pangbourne Village's twin is Houdan (Yvelines) and we arranged to give a concert there on 29 August 2011. Since then we have also visited Michigan USA as guests of former band member Jim Schutz.
In a typical year the band gives a spring and an autumn concert, plays at village fetes and outdoor shows, at parties and weddings and for church services. In December it plays traditional Christmas carols in shops and public houses and in the streets of Pangbourne. The band is a registered charity for musical education and is a member of Making Music, the Southern Counties Amateur Bands Association and the Oxford and District Brass Band Association. It aims to test its skills twice yearly at regional contests. Two years ago it started the Pangbourne Youth Band for local children, which has already given several concerts.
The Henry Fuller Cup
Band's Minutes of 18 May 1987: 'Any Other Business'
The Village Hall has been booked for Saturday 19 September for a 25th Anniversary concert and social afterwards. Mrs Fuller, the widow of Henry Fuller, who re-formed the band, is to be invited. A cup will be purchased and called The Henry Fuller Cup. This will be awarded each year to the most improved member of the band.
In 2009 The Henry Fuller Cup was awarded to a member of the newly-formed Pangbourne Youth Band, but in 2010 the Youth Band presented its own trophy, The Neil Easter Cup, to its most improved player. The Henry Fuller Cup reverted then to the main band, to be awarded for any reason, as determined by the band's committee.
|2001:||James Lowe & James Solera|
|1962 - 1964||Henry Fuller|
|February 1964 - ?||James Tappern|
|c. 1977-79||Margaret Osman|
|c. 1984 - June 1986||Norman Rogerson|
|June 1986 - September 1988||Nigel Horne|
|September 1988 - April 1994||Wilf Loveless|
|April 1994 - August 1995||David Pegram|
|January 1997 - December 2005||David Roberts|
|February - May 2006||Ken Moore|
|August 2006 - April 2007||Nigel Hall|
|July - August 2007||Ian Peaple|
|January 2008 to date:||Stewart Lewins|