Members of Shanklin Town Brass Band are celebrating after getting through to the final of a national competition.

The band took 27 people to the West of England Regional competition at Torquay over the weekend, competing in the 4th division, against 20 other bands.

Malcolm Lewis, Shanklin Town Brass Band

They came third overall, leading to an invite to the Grand Finals in Cheltenham in September. It’s the first time they’ve got through to the finals in 15 years of competing.

Karen Lewis is the chairperson of Shanklin Town Brass Band:

“A lot of the players are in Shanklin Town Brass are homegrown, so they’ve started to learn the instruments via Shanklin Town Brass Band and their academy, so it’s really great. We took quite a few youngsters with us as well, which is a great achievement for them in their lifetime and ours as well.

“There was a lot of hard work went in, the band was very dedicated and there was a lot of work spent individually practising at home which is great.”

They weren’t expecting to win, as Karen explains:

“Malcolm, who’s the musical director was sat next to me, I had to nudge and say ‘that’s us Malcolm, you need to go up there and get the trophy.’ Because we didn’t realise it was us and a load of them were really crying as well, because it was so much hard work for them.”

Shanklin Town Brass Band will now appear  at the finals in Cheltenham on the 16th and 17th September.

*main image Shanklin Town Brass Band May 2014