BACKGROUND INFORMATION COURTESY OF J.I.B
Commemorative Bandstand and Park.
The new Bandstand and Park has been
constructed by Jedforest Instrumental Band to
commemorate its 150th anniversary in
2004, in order to create something permanent and for
the benefit of our community, to mark the band’s
central place in local life, and to thank local
people for their superb support for the band over
There was no park previously in the centre of
Jedburgh. At the same time there are areas of grass
(formed by the demolition of a factory, and
construction of a relief road) which are currently
underused, and unusable because they have an open
boundary to the A68 main road. The Bandstand is the
centrepiece of a new park of about an acre which has
been formed by the installation of a fence
(initially fenced, the band will also plant a beech
hedge to form an attractive boundary in keeping with
Already, local organisations are donating park
benches, and the Community Council has plans to
develop a play area adjacent to the park. The
bandstand will be used by other organisations as
well as the band, such as the Jethart Callant’s
Festival, the pipe bands, local pop groups, the
Jedburgh Singers, and other performers.
Fundraising for the project, which has cost �76,000,
has been carried out by George Burt, the band’s
secretary. Funding was obtained from the EU
Leader+ programme, Scottish Borders Council, Forward
Scotland and Scottish Power.
The Project Manager has been David Sutherland,
principal cornet with the band and a Chartered
Surveyor. As well as designing the Bandstand he has
supervised the work which will have taken 6 months
to complete. Other voluntary work has been carried
out by band members, in landscaping, painting, etc.
Jedforest Instrumental Band.
The band was formed in 1854 and has been in
continuous existence since then, despite some lean
times, including the closure in 1955 of a factory
employing almost 1,000 people (this bandstand and
park now sits on part of its site) when the band was
reduced to just a few players.
Over the past 10 years, the band has enjoyed its
most successful time, both in terms of numbers of
players (overall, we have some 60 players and
trainees) and of success in brass band competitions
(this year we reached our highest point ever in the
brass band grading system).
Last year, we were joint winner (out of all 1,000
brass bands in the UK) of the award for the best
development of young people – “a beacon of
excellence” in the words of the judges.
Abbey Brass Jedforest.
Our “junior” band was formed 5 years ago. As well
as providing training for new players (mostly young,
but also a few older recruits), and being a feeder
for the senior band, Abbey Brass is a competing band
in its own right with many prizes to its credit
(including Scottish Youth Champions in 2003 and
Abbey Brass receives its players from our training
band which takes young people with little or no
musical experience and provides initial tuition.
is the band’s President. He has previously been a
player for some 60 years, initially with Jedforest
Instrumental, then with other bands when he left
Jedburgh for work. He resumed playing with the band
about 12 years ago and retired from performing only
3 years ago.
is the band’s Secretary. He started playing with
the band when at school, left the town for many
years, and returned to play 15 years ago. He is a
member of the Executive Committee of the Scottish
Brass Band Association.
has been our Musical Director for 6 years, and has
been the key factor in the improvement to the band’s
musical standards and its competing successes. He
is an internationally acclaimed arranger and
composer (very few brass band concerts in the world
do not contain at least one of his compositions).
Recently, he was elected as Chair of the Scottish
Borders Brass Band Association.
has been our bandmaster for 4 years. A former
player in the band, he is now a music teacher. He
has been the major element in the development of the
musical ability of our young players. As well as
assisting the Musical Director with Jedforest
Instrumental, he is conductor of Abbey Brass. He
has arranged many pieces for both bands, and is
establishing a reputation for his published
has played with Jedforest Instrumental for 35 years,
and is our longest continuously serving member. In
all that time, she has rarely missed an engagement
or a rehearsal.
has been playing cornet in Abbey Brass for 2 years
having previously receiving tuition in our training
band. She is a primary school pupil.
is the band’s Principal Cornet player. A Chartered
Surveyor, he has been responsible for the design,
contracting, supervision, and a lot of the physical
labour, of the creation of the bandstand and park.
is Editor of the “British Bandsman”, the world’s
premier brass band journal, established in 1887. He
is a member of the Executive Committee of the
Scottish Brass Band Association, and was formerly a
player in the famous Whitburn Band.
is Jedburgh’s Honorary Provost and Chair of Jedburgh
Community Council. He was a former Herald of the
Jethart Callant’s Festival.