It’s Whit Friday but Not as We Know It

A typical Saddleworth Band Contest Day

Today is Whit Friday and in Saddleworth where I live, that means only one thing. It’s Band Contest Day.

But this year is different. The streets are quiet and as I sit here, I can’t hear any bands playing.

Ordinarily the streets would be full of people and the roads lined with parked cars. There would be coaches rumbling round as brass bands from all over the world try to navigate between the different Saddleworth Villages. And the sound of bands playing would drift into the house.

But not this year. The contest is cancelled.

Despite the cancellation, some things remain the same. After weeks of sunshine, today the heavens have opened in Saddleworth. It rains on Band Contest Day what feels like nine years in every ten. I guess the organisers forgot to cancel the weather this year.

But if you do like a good brass band, head over to Foden’s Band YouTube channel where they are premiering an online Whit Friday Band Contest. There are 79 bands from all over the world playing.

As for this image, I shot it at the Band Contest in our village in 2018. That year the rain reached biblical proportions. I used a Fuji X-T2 with Fuji 18-135 lens at 110mm. Handheld exposure of 1/25” at f/6.4 and ISO200.

Wherever you are, have a great weekend. I’m off to watch YouTube.

2 thoughts on “It’s Whit Friday but Not as We Know It

    1. Great to hear. The running order shows a few bands playing Ravenswood and the Wizard. It wouldn’t be a band contest without hearing Ravenswood ten times.
      …and now the suns come out. That’s really rubbing it in. Fingers crossed for next year.

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