Three members of Penicuik Silver Band were recently awarded their gold medals.
These medals are issued by the Scottish Amateur Brass Band Association in recognition of the 50 years membership that each of the three had given to brass banding. The three members are Tom Easton (euphonium), Ian Forrest (euphonium) and Ken Perrit (baritone).
All three were taught to play in the 1960s and have been playing with bands since although not all on their current instrument. Their medals were presented by John Gilmour, a member of the executive committee of SABBA. He remarked that 50 years was a long time and a huge commitment to make to a hobby. He asked if any of the three had counted how many rehearsals, gala days, concerts and competitions they had attended over the years.
The three join another three members of the band who had been awarded their 50 year medals in previous years. This does not mean that banding is an aging past time. The band have ten members who are under the age of 25 with six of these still not of an age to sit their Highers at school.
Mr Gilmour also mentioned that several years ago there were only six youth bands taking part in brass band competitions in Scotland while this year there were 42 and two new band have just started up - one in the Hebrides and one in Orkney.