Magheramorne Silver band shuffles positions ahead of anniversary year

Magheramorne Silver Band step out at the Broadisland Gathering in Ballycarry. INLT 06-603-CON
Magheramorne Silver Band step out at the Broadisland Gathering in Ballycarry. INLT 06-603-CON

a NUMBER of new faces were elected to office at Magheramorne Silver Band’s annual meeting.

The AGM was held in Magheramorne Orange Hall in the presence of band members, vice-presidents, and the president, Mr George Apsley.

Outgoing chairman Jeffrey Duff commented on his years in office, and his hopes for a team of officers to take the band ahead into this exciting year.

Elections were then conducted by vice-president, Wilfie Hanna, whose daughter, Emily, plays in the band.

Main positions-

President: George Apsley and other vice-presidents re-elected.

New chairman: Ian McGarel

New secretary: Christina Cameron

Treasurer: Randal McDowell, re-elected

Conductor: James McDowell, re-elected

New assistant conductor: Cllr Mark McKinty

New Committee – a mixture of new faces and experienced members to lead the band into it’s 130th year: three table officers plus Mark McKinty, Eddy Ellison, Ian Cameron, Davy Hall, and Arianne Moore.

During the meeting, a wide range of topics was discussed. It was highlighted that over the past year, the band was successful in receiving £5,000 from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland for new instruments. £1,200 was raised over Christmas for Action MS, including a donation from Larne’s very own ‘Ma’ (Olivia Nash), adding to the thousands of pounds raised by the band for good causes over the years.

PR officer Mark McKinty also highlighted how the band’s presence on the internet was being used to attract new members and engagement enquiries from near and far, including invitations as far afield as Enniskillen.

“We have been growing our website and Facebook page to reach out to as many people as possible - potential members, band bookings, and general followers,” he said.

It was noted that a number of new officers had first contacted the band through the website.

Looking forward to the band’s 130th anniversary in September, newly-elected chairman Ian McGarel hopes the Magheramorne Silver Band team approach will continue.

“As with any organisation, the band faces a lot of challenges, but we look forward to the year ahead. The band has an increasingly strong social element which is important to play together as a group and enjoy our music,” he said.

If anyone is interested in joining the Magheramorne Silver Band, they are invited to along to their meetings on a Thursday night at 8pm, and anyone is welcome, young and old. Instruments and tuition are provided free of charge.

“We are looking for new players, even if you have no previous playing experience.

“If you are interested in joining up and learning to play an instrument please contact us on our Facebook page, or by telephoning 07771 925546,” said Mark McKinty.