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Pavilions for Music 

Bringing Bandstands Back to Life

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Blog

One year on.....

Posted on May 15, 2016 at 5:00 PM

I thought it would a good time to update on progress as I think it has been about just over a year I established the CIC. 

Its been a mixed bag but pretty good overall and with some great feedback and responses. 

Highlights - 

 

  • I have visited over 200 bandstands (212 to be precise and if you include repeat visits, more like 300).
  • The database now covers 1,189 bandstands existing and lost and I keep finding more that crop up.
  • I now have a vast database of images of nearly all bandstands, although some remain elusive. 
  • My postcard collection alone totals more than 500. 
  • Bandstands have been restored and replaced across the country - more than 100 of them, from Hawick to Hanley, Watford to Windsor, St. Helens to Stoke. The rate of restoration has been phenomenal. 
  • I now have a database of all bandstands and contact details for all. 
  • We have had great coverage on media - Daily Mail to Radio 2
  • I managed to bag myself the status as one of the Dullest Men in Great Britain too. 
  • We now have 2 books on bandstands out there and a third on the way (2018 ) with a fourth on the way too. 
  • We continue to promote the wider use of bandstands to users and local authorities and will continue to do so. 
  • The Queen now has her "own" bandstand in Royal Windsor and opened as part of her 90th birthday celebrations. 
  • New bandstands planned in Luton and Coventry
Lesser highlights - 
  • We were unsuccessful in our HLF bid sadly to look at encouraging greater use of bandstands in the Eastern Region
  • There are still many bandstands not being used that should be
  • There is still too much red tape and not enough flexibility for using bandstands
  • There are still too many bandstands in poor shape - Lancaster - you have the worst in the country.
The future - 
  • A continuation of banging the drum for bandstands - I feel that strongly about them and their long term sustainability is vital for their long term survival
  • An exhibition somewhere - Ironbridge Gorge Museum? Beamish Museum? V&A? I need a venue, I need a grant and the time to do but having spoken to Lost Art guys, the time has come to celebrate the design of these iconic features
  • A book from Historic England - under way
  • A book covering ALL bandstands - almost an A to Z - under way. 
  • Greater coverage in the media - a documentary perhaps, how good would that be? 
So all in all, pretty successful. I will continue the crusade as boring as it may seem to many. 
A question I am frequently asked? My favourite bandstand? By the seaside...Brighton. In a public park... Town Gardens, Swindon. But I will probably change my mind next week. 
Thank you everybody for your continued support. You may also be interested in a new book out in June this year with many many bandstands included. 'Great British Parks - A Celebration' - celebrating 20 years of restoring parks with HLF funding and needless to say includes many beautiful bandstands. 


 

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