Next Saturday, Strata Brass will once again have the honour of accompanying Brandon Banner Group in the annual Durham Miners’ Gala.
The Durham Miners’ Gala is a large annual gathering and labour festival held on the second Saturday in July in the city of Durham, England. It is associated with the coal mining heritage (and particularly that of miners’ trade unionism) of the Durham Coalfield, which stretched throughout the traditional County of Durham. It is also locally called “The Big Meeting” or “Durham Big Meeting”.
Its highlight consists of a parade of banners, each typically accompanied by a brass band, which are marched to the old Racecourse, where political speeches are delivered. In the afternoon a miners’ service is held in Durham Cathedral, which may include the blessing of any new banners.
During the march bands and their banners play a wide variety of music instead of the traditional marches. This years poster gives some clues to what you can expect from Strata’s offering this year to entertain the thousands in attendance, especially when we stop at the historic Magdalene Steps.