Farewell to Roy, a ‘fine musician’ and brass band stalwart

Black Dyke Band at Victoria Hall, Queensbury.'150 Golden Years, The History of Black Dyke Band book Launch with Dr Roy Newsome, left and conductor Dr Nicholas Childs.

Black Dyke Band at Victoria Hall, Queensbury.'150 Golden Years, The History of Black Dyke Band book Launch with Dr Roy Newsome, left and conductor Dr Nicholas Childs.

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THE brass band world is mourning the loss of Elland man Dr Roy Newsome.

He died aged 81 on Monday surrounded by his family at his Bury home.

Dr Newsome’s musical career began in 1940 when he joined Elland Silver Band as a cornet player - his father and grandfather were both members of the band.

Aged 12 he was a member of the Brighouse Home Guard Band.

Dr Newsome later returned to Elland Silver and with him as conductor in 1958 the band won the fourth section title of the Daily Herald national brass band competition in London.

He also had a keen interest in organ music and was an assistant organist at Elland Parish Church and organist and choirmaster at Stainland Parish Church.

He was a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists and a teacher at Elland Church of England School.

In 1966 he was appointed bandmaster of Black Dyke Band, of Queensbury, which he led until 1977. He won five British Open titles with four different bands.

He was president of the National Association of Brass Band Conductors and served several years as the Musical Director of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain.

Dr Newsome adjudicated at virtually all major brass band competitions throughout the world.

His PhD degree from the University of Salford was for research into brass band history and he had a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Durham.

He also wrote five books about brass bands including “150 Golden Years” charting Black Dyke from 1855 to 2005.

Kathleen Harrison, secretary of Elland Silver Band, said he would be missed.

“He was a very fine musician, composer and adjudicator who always had a great interest in Elland Silver Band,” she said.

“His death is very sad news and our condolences are with his family.”

Dr Newsome leaves his wife, Muriel, who he married in 1954. They had two sons.