Hamilton Flute Band member 50 year medal
We often comment on the work done within the bands community by our younger members and on some of the exceptional skills they possess. What we sometimes fail to point out is the fact that for many bands within the forum we have so many dedicated senior members who have been, and in some cases still are, the backbone of the bands within our City. This is true of course in many other areas also. No one can highlight the many positives that being in a band brings better than those who have been involved for most of their life, the friendship, leadership and the many opportunities for travel that the band can give, and most importantly the love of music. These members throughout the history of the bands have passed on the skills and experience required to younger members, ensuring that the ethos and legacy of each band continues. We highlight some members today but all bands have these great people especially within the longer established bands. But even with the younger bands within the forum we see each band produce leaders who continue to promote the culture and traditions of marching bands.
Today we congratulate John Cairns who received his 50year medal on Saturday night at the annual awards dinner for the Flute Band Association. He joined the Hamilton Flute band as a boy in 1957 and has been a member ever since. During his time in the band he has enjoyed playing in France/Belgium at the Somme battlefields, the Lord Mayors show in London (twice) and countless trips to Scotland. He is still a fully active member playing concert flute on the street and contra-Alto for contests & concerts. He is a past hon. president of the band and current Vice President. In addition to his years in the Hamilton Flute Band, John was actively involved playing and tutoring Killalloo Accordion Band for 40+ years and continues to support the band. He was presented with his medal by Dougie Gourlay, President of the Flute Band Association, Northern Ireland, Dougie is a member of the Ballygowan Flute Band himself and a long-time supporter of the FBA and the NIBA. John was joined at the presentation by his son Tim who has 22 years’ service, and also his brother Billy and Alex Birney, both who have been involved with the band for over 50 years.