History

The first brass band in Rockhampton is believed to have been the Rockhampton Volunteer Rifle Brigade band, formed sometime in the 1860’s

The forerunner of our band was formed in 1873 as the Royal Ancient Order of Foresters Band. In 1917, the name again changed to the Rockhampton City Concert Band, and later again to the Rockhampton City Band.

During the Second World War, the band was known as the Rockhampton City (42 Battalion) Band

The band served for a time in New Guinea during the war. Some members of the band were lost in this conflict. One member of that band is still playing with the current band .. Mr. Ken Knowles, who plays trombone with us. The band reverted to the title Rockhampton City Band in the late 1940’s.

The band has competed at all grades in competitions throughout the eastern states. Currently, the band competes in C grade. Due to the physical location of Rockhampton, competing usually means many hundreds of kilometres in travel, and the outlay of many thousands of dollars in travel and accommodation expenses. (We’re lucky, in that bands from more northern parts of Queensland may have to travel thousands of kilometres to a Queensland contest.) The band has a long and proud history of competition, and pictures adorn the band hall walls of competitions dating back to 1906.

The band has also produced many fine soloists. One of the most successful has been Mr Keith Munns on flugel horn, who won many competitions in Queensland and Australian competition during the 1950’s and 60’s. Mr Munns is still connected with the band, currently holding the position of President of the band’s committee.

A highlight of the band’s history was the construction of the band hall in Goss Park, Gladstone Road, Rockhampton, officially opened in 1950. This hall, although changed somewhat in appearance, is still used by the band to this day.

Now known officially as the Rockhampton City Brass Band, the band operates as a self funded organisation, and is not sponsored by any business. A hardworking ladies committee raises funds for the band through a bingo session each Thursday morning, with band members holding another bingo session each Saturday evening. The band has also been successful in obtaining grants from various government and non government organisations in past years, notably from the Jupiters Casino Community Benefit Fund. Funds are also raised through raffles, pie and lamington drives, and other methods.

The band celebrated 130 years of the band’s existence in Rockhampton in September 2003. Approximately 100 members and ex members attended the function, during which Keith Munns was granted life membership of the Queensland Band Association, only the eighth person to have been given this honour.

In October 2003, the band won it’s first competition in some years.

Competing in C Grade, under conductor Alex Ferguson, the band won the hymn tune, concert program and aggregate trophies at the Nambour Festival of Brass.

In 2006, the band was again successful in competition, this time in the Best of Brass competition in Maryborough, winning C Grade under conductor Rob McEwan.