Our very own Elland Silver Youth Brass Band have been crowned European Brass Band Champions 2017.

And our 12-year-old trombonist, Joe Heartfield, was named Best Soloist.

Our 45 strong band aged 11 to 18 competed in the Development Section of the contest which was held at Ostend in Belgium.

Six bands from across Europe took part in the competition with Elland Silver Youth Band the sole English competitor, having qualified as last year’s National Youth Band Champions.

Musical director Samantha Harrison said: “The band has worked extremely hard over the past few months, attending extra rehearsals and workshops to prepare their programme and really wanted to do their very best. We were fortunate to compete in the competition last year in Lille where we came second so this year we were even more determined to succeed.

“It still hasn’t quite sunk in. To become European Champions is a dream come true. I’m so proud of all the band – they are such a fabulous group of young people, very talented musicians, but a great team and work so well together.”

We would like to thank all the volunteers who chaperoned the young people and transported the band’s percussion equipment in its van.

We would also like to thank all the local organisations, charities who made donations to help subsidise the trip and people who help with fundraising. Without your support the trip would have been impossible to Finance.

The band will now be invited to attend the 2018 European Youth Championship which will be held in Utrecht in Holland, in Sunday 6th May 2018.