Founded in the early 1900s, Foden’s Richardson Band maintains a world class reputation in the field of brass music with a traditional and unique style. Its repertoire stretches from light popular music (both old and new) through operatic, film and light orchestral works, to serious original brass band music performed by outstanding soloists and supported by an enviable collection of fine musicians.
As well as performing in its own right the band regularly works with other musical groups, including Promenade-type concerts featuring ensembles such as the Hallé Orchestra and Camerata. Recent highlights have included radio and television work as well as a Scandinavian tour. New music is promoted and commissioned, as are educational programmes for schools, colleges and other musical organisations.
The origins of the band reach back to 1900 when the Cheshire village of Elworth formed its own band having been let down in its attempt to secure the services of the nearby town band to feature in the celebrations marking the relief of Mafeking in the Boer War. From among the village musicians, local industrialist Edwin Foden formed the Fodens Motor Works Band; by 1909 it had achieved Championship Section status, a prestigious position that has been maintained ever since.
The band has been a prize-winner 32 times at the coveted British Open Championships, winning nine times outright, and 37 times at the National Championships of Great Britain, winning outright 12 times; it was also BBC Band of the Year in 1990 and 1992, as well as having won the All England Masters Champions in 1990, 1991, 1994 and 1995 and the Swiss Open Championships in 1993. In addition to this, it toured Europe for ENSA during WWII, and has been ordered to play by Royal Command on three occasions.
In 1997 the band accepted new sponsorship from the French instrument manufacturer Antoine Courtois that also allowed the band to resume its original name of Foden’s. With this fresh impetus the band again experienced major Championship success, winning the coveted title Champion Band of Great Britain in 1999.
In recent years it has repeatedly won the North West Area Championship, been a prize-winner and runner-up at the British Open Championships, and in 2002 won the All England Masters Champions; in 2007 the band’s successes included the North West Area Championship for a record-breaking fourteenth time, being crowned the International Master Champions, and victory at the Tameside Whit Friday March Contest for a sixth consecutive year.
Foden's Richardson Band