This story begins in 1933 when the cottages of Prospect Square were demolished and the Skelmanthorpe Labour Club was constructed in their place. At this time, Skelmanthorpe Band was leasing and rehearsing in brewery owned buildings above stables that belonged to The Three Horseshoes Pub on Commercial Road, Skelmanthorpe.
The outbreak of World War II saw the commandeering by the Home Guard of the band’s rehearsal facility which, in 1942, the band vacated, making its new headquarters The Commercial Inn (now The Chartist Pub). It wasn’t until after the war in 1946 that the band returned to its original rehearsal room. Two years later, it registered to compete in the Daily Herald Championships- better known today as the Yorkshire Regional Championships.
During the late 1950s, Herbert Mann had the idea to move Skelmanthorpe Band to the now disused Labour Club in Prospect Square.The band had been offered use of the building free of charge so the decision to relocate was made; the band’s trustees met with the officials of the Labour Club and terms for a one hundred year free lease with an option to extend a further 90 years were agreed. Skelmanthorpe Band moved to its current location and the future of the Skelmanthorpe Brass Band Community was born…
Thirty years later, negotiations took place for the purchase of this small, timber rehearsal room and its surrounding land. Plans were put into operation for the building of a new bandroom and the digging of the footings commenced. However, work on the project then came to a halt for almost a year until band member, John Turner, revived enthusiasm by shouldering the building of the new bandroom himself, assisted by band colleague Lawrence Mann who worked as his labourer.
Around a decade or so later, the advent or percussion meant that the bandroom needed to be extended. The building work was carried out by a local builder with all joinery, plumbing and electrical works carried out ‘in house’ by band members.
Over the coming years, interest in the Skelmanthorpe Band gradually became more evident with the formation of Skelmanthorpe Prospect Brass, Skelmanthorpe Training Band and the foundation groups.
In the Winter or 2010, 4 members of the Committee met in a small, cold, windowless room under the existing band room and asked the question, ‘How can we extend all that we presently have and create a legacy for future generations?’ The outcome, and many meetings later, was that we submitted an application for grant support to the Liz and Terry Bramall Foundation.
Our successful application resulted in the purchase of a full set of new brass and percussion instruments and the funding to expand the bandroom and car park. Plans were submitted and in May 2013 work began on the second extension to Skelmanthorpe Bandroom. We now have two excellent rehearsal rooms, a tuition room, office, library, kitchen, reception area and store rooms.