When Poppies Fall

The work on the release of the second CD featuring the Band of The Parachute Regiment has been completed. Their latest release, to coincide with Remembrance Sunday, features two poignant tracks.

On 24 June 2008, Private Joe Whittaker, 4th Battalion The Parachute Regiment was killed while on active service in Afghanistan. “Song for Joe” composed by his sister, Musician Kate Whittaker now a member of The Parachute Regiment Band, was originally written for his funeral but here it has been arranged for military band by his sister who plays the saxophone solo.

Upon noticing a single poppy growing in a field, Classic FM presenter John Brunning was inspired to write “When Poppies Fall” as a commemorative piece.  Here arranged wind band and featuring  John Innes, this solemn piece is a very fitting title track to the album.

The CD will be available for purchase after the 21st of October at http://www.airborneshop.com.

24 June 2008, Pte Joe Whittaker, 4th Battalion The Parachute Regiment wasK Whittaker (Solo Alto Saxophone: Musn K Whittaker) 3’53’’


killed while on active service in Afghanistan. This piece, originally written for his
funeral for solo saxophone with piano and bass guitar, was composed and
arranged for military band by his sister, Musician Kate Whittaker.


Bolton Festival release

The latest CD from the Bolton Festival Choir and Orchestra which features the recording of their annual concert held at Bolton Parish Church on the 29th of August is now available.

The double CD features “The Mass of the Groveby John Ellis in addition by Handel’s Ode  for St Cecilia’s Day and Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music“.

Copies of the CD priced at £10 including postage and packing are available from the choir at  www.boltonfestivalchoir.org.uk .

Perspectives of Pretoria

The latest recording by the Wingates Band commemorates the Pretoria Pit Disaster which occurred one hundred years ago this year.

On the 21st of December 1910, there was a massive underground explosion in the Pretoria Pit in Westhoughton Lancashire, thought to have been caused by a build up of gas from a roof collapse the previous day.

To learn more about the Pretoria Pit Disaster go to http://www.staveley-genealogy.com/pretoria_pit.htm.

Local families  suffered enormously in the tragedy, in total 344 men and boys died and  one lady lost four sons and two brothers.

The CD which features “In Pitch Black” a new composition by the band’s own composer in residence Lucy Pankhurst will be launched at a concert at Westhoughton Parish Church on the 20th of November.

A Stannington Christmas

The weekend was spent in Sheffield recording the latest of our contributions for Christmas.

The Stannington Brass Band joined forces with members of the Bolsterstone Male Voice Choir recording a fine selection of Christmas fayre including a selection of the famous ‘Sheffield Carols’.  These traditional carols are exclusive to a small area of Sheffield with some beautifully descriptive local tunes.

The CD is due for release in October of this year.

To learn about the band visit their website at www.stanningtonbrassband.org.uk.


We have spent two further days this week in Colchester with the Band of The Parachute Regiment putting the finishing touches to their CD ‘Remembrance’ which is due for release to coincide with this year’s Remembrance Day Services in November.

The recorded items on this occasion were a second version of  John Brunning’s song ‘When Poppies Fall’. On this occasion the vocal was provided by the Scottish operatic tenor, John Innes, “The Peoples Tenor”. John, a former Army Musician has raised over £60,000 for Army Charities and all the monies raised with this latest recording will be donated to the charity ‘Help for Heroes’.

The second piece was composed, arranged and performed by the band’s saxophonist, Kate Whittaker. ‘Song for Joe’ is dedicated to her brother Private Joe Whittaker of the 4th Batallion The Parachute Regiment who was killed in Afghanistan two years ago.

To learn more about John Innes visit his website at www.johncraiginnes.com.

More details about The Band of The Parachute Regiment can be found at http://www.army.mod.uk/music/corps-band/544.aspx.

Bolton Festival Choir & Orchestra release

The annual concert by the Bolton Festival Choir and Orchestra conducted by John Powell was presented to a large appreciative audience at Bolton Parish Church on Sunday 29th of August 2010.

Works included Vaughan Williams’ ‘Serenade to Music’ and Handel’s ‘Ode for St Cecilia’s Day’ but the featured work was the first performance of John Ellis’ ‘The Mass of The Grove’.

The entire concert was recorded and a double CD of the event will be available shortly.

To learn more about the choir please visit their website at www.boltonfestivalchoir.org.uk/index.html.