Two members of Whaley Bridge Band have been honoured after clocking up 100 years of hitting the right notes.
Laurie Walton and Steve Sharp have reached the impressive milestone between them, and were presented with long service awards at the annual Christmas concert at Whaley Bridge Bowling Club. Their service has also been recognised by the North West Area Brass Band Association Awards (NWABBA).
In 1953, junior cornet player Laurie Walton joined Whaley Bridge Band. Aged just eight, he started his career on the “back row” of the cornet ranks, but made rapid progress to the front bench and was appointed Principal Cornet by the time he was 12.
And for the last 60 years no Whaley Bridge Band concert has been complete without Laurie. As well as playing, he has trained and coached young players and has assisted many other local bands as a guest musician. Laurie may well be unique in being a member of the same band for the entire 60 years of his playing career, and he is certainly the first member of Whaley Bridge Band to achieve this honour. In addition to a certificate he also received a medal to commemorate this outstanding achievement.
Although a relative newcomer to Whaley Bridge Band, Steve Sharp has played with brass bands in the area since 1972, starting, like Laurie, as a back row cornet player and finding his true vocation on soprano cornet four years later.