Bands looks to the past for jubilee celebrations

THE City of Ely Military Band brought a touch of nostalgia to Palace Green this week by performing a concert first heard in the city more than 100 years ago.

The band is celebrating its golden jubilee this year and has a packed schedule of events taking place throughout the year to mark its 50 years.

On Tuesday evening, the band set up outside the historic Old Palace to play a programme of music using the original arrangements that were first played by bands in Ely in 1891.

Bandmaster Phil Green told the Ely Standard: “It went very well, the weather abated nicely and a there was a good band turnout. The audience that was there was small but very appreciative and I think enjoyed the event.

“We found in the archives a copy of the programme they played on May 8, 1891 and there was also a piece in the archive that they actually played on the day so it was nice to be able to play a piece of music that forms a very important part of out history.”

The band will be out and about again for a cycle-playathon on May 13, giving concerts in Wentworth at 10.15am, Robert Arkenstall in Haddenham at 12pm, Little Downham Village Centre at 2.45pm and Palace Green, Ely at 4.15pm.

The concerts are another nod to the band’s history, when it used to visit many of Ely surrounding villages to entertain.

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For anyone interested in local history the band now has a commemorative book on sale for �5 at Burrows Bookshop in High Street Passage.