Black Dyke


In 1816 Peter Wharton founded a brass and reed band in the Yorkshire village of Queenshead – later to become Queensbury. John Foster, apart from being the founder of Black Dyke Mills, played French Horn in this band. It has been said on many occasions that Black Dyke was formed from it; however, this is not strictly true, as “Peter Whartons band went out of existence through loss of members”. In 1833 a new band was formed named ‘Queenshead Band’, which may well have contained players from the former band. It is reported that this Band reached its zenith from 1838 to 1843, at which time it consisted of 18 musicians”.

On the 15th. September 2005 the band were proud to celebrate their 150th anniversary, two of the many highlights were the publication of “150 Golden Years”, a book by Dr. Roy Newsome, in word and photograph, describing the history and the progress of Black Dyke Band from 1855 to 2005. Also a unique ‘triple CD’ covering the recorded musical history of the band from the early days of 1903 to the present day.                                                                                                                  

Black Dyke Band is the most recorded band in the world with over 350 recordings and growing every year. It is also the most successful contesting band in the world having won the European Championships thirteen times, most recently in 2015, the British Open no fewer than 30 times (most recently 2014) and the National Championships of Great Britain 23 times (most recently 2014). In 2009, and again in 2011, 2012 and 2013, the band became Champion Band at the English National Championships and were named English National Champions in 2014 by virtue of having won the National Brass Band Championships in October 2014.

Nationals Contesting History

The most successful band ever at the National Championships. 23 wins at the Championship Section Final in 83 appearances (21 from 55 at RAH including two hat-tricks from 1947-49 and 1975-77, 2 from 28 at Crystal Palace). Five wins since 2000. Last won it in 2014, and the last time Black Dyke didn't qualify was in 2013.

Principal Players

Principal Cornet: Richard Marshall
Soprano: Martin Irwin
Flugel: Zoe Hancock
Solo Horn: Siobhan Bates
Baritone: Katrina Marzella
Trombone: Brett Baker
Euphonium: Dan Thomas
Tuba:Harry Cunningham
Percussion: Matt Rigg