1998 saw the Centenary of the Slaidburn Silver Band, a typical 'village band' based in the Hodder Valley in Lancashire. Like many voluntary organisations the Band has had its 'ups and downs' during the last 100 years, but thankfully has survived to be one of the few remaining bands in the area.
One of the Band's claims to fame, certainly in the band world, is the commissioning from William Rimmer of the march which bears the village and Band's name -Slaidburn. This march is probably in the library of every brass band in the country, and since its publication at the turn of the century has been a top selling march even to the present day. It has no doubt been played by thousands of brass players throughout the years and many players are surprised to discover that Slaidburn actually exists as a village - and has a brass band too!
From its early days the Band provided music for many local events, such as church processions, sports days, agricultural shows and indoor concerts - a tradition which still continues 100 years later. In the mid 1930s the Band travelled to Leeds to broadcast live for the BBC in a programme featuring the people and places of the Hodder Valley and featuring, of course, Slaidburn.
Following the Coronation festivities of the 1953 the membership dwindled until only a quartet of players remained and it was decided in 1964 to disband and sell the the instruments. Thankfully, the threat of losing their band prompted enough villagers to join the Band as beginners to keep things going and since then the Band has remained active and busy.
Between 1970 and 1988 the Band gradually replaced all its set of 70 year old instruments and also purchased a new set of uniforms. In 1989 the Band was honoured by an invitation to play before Her Majesty The Queen during a visit to the Hodder Valley.
In 1998, the Band celebrated its nominal Centenary year with a wide program of events, including a History evening, with musical features, and a Midsummer Brass concert at the village recognised as the Centre of the Kingdom, Dunsop Bridge.