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Issue 6119

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Nationals verdict set for July

Monday 18 May, 2020

Qualifying bands will find out in July if the 2020 National Brass Band Championships are going ahead, it has been confirmed.

Doubt remains over this year’s contests, with the continued spread of COVID-19 – and associated government guidance – causing difficulties in rehearsing, fundraising and travelling for bands, on top of any strict social distancing measures likely to be in place for venues for some time to come. Organiser Kapitol Promotions revealed that it would hold off from making the announcement until the start of July, adding that it was monitoring the situation closely.

Philip Morris, managing director of Kapitol Promotions, said: “Obviously, we are paying close attention to the COVID-19 situation and all government advice daily, along with statements issued by the Royal Albert Hall, London.

“We are also in close contact with the management of both venues and, at the beginning of July, will contact bands to advise them about whether or not the 2020 National Finals are going ahead as planned, in line with government guidance to public venues about whether or not they are allowed to reopen and taking any government-specified social distancing measures into account.

“We maintain constant touch with the competing bands, the majority of which say they are still looking forward to the two Finals events, if at all possible. However, we are also acutely aware that it needs to be safe for bands to rehearse before such major contests, as well as for them to book hotels and coaches to attend, which is why a definitive decision will be announced at the beginning of July.”

Philip added: “I would like to stress that the safety of bands, supporters, audiences and of course, our own staff and crews, is uppermost in our minds and will be the most importance aspect of the final decision about whether to proceed. Meanwhile, please do take care all.”

Bands in the First to Fourth sections are due to meet at The Centaur, Cheltenham, on September 26 and 27. Championship Section bands are to perform at the Royal Albert Hall, London, on October 10.