History of the Band
The band was formed in 1947 and was originally known as the Bestwood Black Diamonds Colliery Band; the name ‘Black Diamonds’ comes from the coal that was brought up from the (now closed) Bestwood Colliery. Apparently when it was washed and broken it glistened like diamonds, and was a very high-quality coal.
The band rehearsed in the old Lamp Cabin, where miners used to leave their pit lamps and tags. They remained there for a number of years, and when the pit eventually shut around 1967 they continued to rehearse in the Lamp Cabin under the watchful eye of the Workshop’s manager.
The workshops then closed, and the band rehearsed in the St Mark’s Church and the Welfare before they were offered a permanent home within the Community Centre in the village.
The band retained a position in the Top Section for a number of years, and many a good player passed through the band Some remained for many years, such as the present conductor Brian Draper, who was the principle Euphonium player for many years. The band won many prizes, and their name is still well known around the country.
In recent years they have rebuilt their numbers, and are just beginning to start again on the contesting field. They will start in the Fourth section and – hopefully – will progress upwards.