The Training Band

Learning to play a musical instrument can benefit young people in numerous ways. Apart from being an enjoyable and rewarding hobby, playing a musical instrument in a brass band can help to develop social and teamwork skills, mathematical skills and it provides an excellent subject for college and job applications. Tuition is provided by a resident professional Musical Director and players from the main band. Players also have the opportunity to improve their skills through joint rehearsals with the main Hyde Band.The band plays an active part in the community and appears in various concerts and gigs throughout the year. It is committed to bringing music to the local community by performing to a wide range of audiences and by encouraging and teaching people to play music. The band also enter contests, which provides excellent experience for players wishing to progress to the main band.

Of course these benefits extend to anyone, young or older, and the Training Band has a combination of players aged from 5 years old to 70 years plus! Some adults join wishing to brush up previously learned skills, some have no prior musical knowledge, but all achieve enormous satisfaction from being a part of the Training Band.

In 2015 the Training Band came First in their Section at the Wessex Brass Band Association Youth and Training Contest, as well as gaining several other individual and group awards. Recent concerts and events have included a ‘Cream Tea ‘concert at Rockbourne Roman Villa, entertaining the crowds at Damerham Village Fair, concerts at a local nursing home, playing at the public opening of Fordingbridge Foodbank and performing at Pinewalk Bandstand in Bournemouth.

Musical Director – Christopher Mahy

Christopher Mahy read music at Oxford and holds diplomas in horn, piano, organ and choral conducting and has taught in a wide range of settings from schools to university. While Director of Music at Desborough School, Maidenhead, the 150-strong boys’ choir sang annually at the Royal Festival Hall and also recorded for ITV, BBC and Deutsche Grammophon. During 20 years as Head of the Instrumental Teaching Service for West Sussex, he conducted the County Youth Orchestra in many concerts and broadcast for Classic FM.

Christopher currently teaches for the award-winning Portsmouth Music Service and continues to play the French horn in various orchestras and with the quintet Liquid Brass – available for corporate events, weddings and parties! He also enjoys exploring the brass band repertoire playing tenor horn with Hyde Band.


Hyde Training Band was formed in the 1990s. The ethos of the band was to provide free tuition to anyone interested in learning a brass instrument and in time progress to the senior band. This ethos remains the same today. Over the years many members of the Training Band have progressed into the main band and are still playing with Hyde Band today. Others have moved away and joined other senior bands and some are even playing professionally. This is testament to the success of the Training Band and the excellent tuition provided.

How to Join

The Training Band rehearses every Monday evening (during school term) from 6:30pm-7:30pm at Church Rooms, Fordingbridge Methodist Church, West St, Church St, Fordingbridge SP6 1BB. There is an annual membership fee of only £60 (which can be payable quarterly – £15.00 or half yearly-£30.00).

Players receive professional tuition and, where possible, are provided with an instrument on free loan. If you are interested in joining the band, please contact Sue Bennett, Training Band Secretary, on 01425 654020 or email

Training Band Photo Gallery

The images below depict Hyde Training Band playing at various events and contests.