We have completed the work on the latest recording by the Wingates Band, ‘Perspectives of Pretoria’, which commemorates the centenary of one of the worst mining disasters ever to beset this country. On the morning of the 21st of December 1910, 344 men and boys died when an explosion occurred at the local Pretoria Pit and the death toll included seven members of the band.
The CD includes a newly commissioned piece of music, ‘In Pitch Black’, written by the band’s own composer in residence Lucy Pankhurst, a number of marches, hymns, and local poetry. It also features some poignant recorded recollections by the late Ben Byers, the band’s principal trombone in his later life, who as a 14 years old at the time of the disaster vividly recalls the incident and the impact on the local community.
The project provides a unique and historical record of the events and will be launched at a concert at Westhoughton Parish Church on the 20th of November 2010. To learn more about the band visit their website at www.wingatesband.co.uk.