Nantlle Vale Royal Silver Band


The Band's History

The Nantlle Vale Royal Silver Band was formed in 1865 and was originally called ‘The Penyrorsedd Band’.

Thirty years later the band was invited to play for the Prince and Princess of Wales during their visit to the National Eisteddfod in Caernarfon, as they sailed by on the royal yacht, and from that day it became known as the Nantlle Vale Royal Band.

The Band got to represent Wales in The Royal Albert Hall, London on the occasion of Arthur Sullivan, the famous opera singer's Jubilee.

Between 1874 and 1897 the band won the first prize award four times in the National Eisteddfod. The band have in the past been recognised among the best in the country, competing in class A competitions throughout Britain, under very talented conductors.

The following list shows how successful they were during this period:

Year Prize Competition
1898 First Prize N. W. Association in the Rhos
1898 First Prize Ffestiniog Festival
1899 First Prize Cardiff Festival
1902 First Prize Bangor Festival (joint with "Batley Old")
1925 First Prize Pwllheli Festival
1926 First Prize Blaenau Ffestiniog
1927 First Prize Corwen
1927 First Prize Caernarfon
1930 First Prize N. W. Association, Caernarfon
1950 First Prize Eisteddfod in Butlins, Pwllheli
1965 First Prize Century celebration - National Eisteddfod in Newtown


Sue Massey from Penmaenmawr is the conductor. Sue Joined the Menai Bridge Silver Band when she was studying music in Bangor University. She has been a member of the band for three and a half years now and has been conducting for two years.

Congratulations to Sue on winning the Learner of the Year External link: Opens in a new window trophy at the 2005 National Eisteddfod.

The Band

Congratulations to the band at competing In the National Eisteddfod in the Faenol. They came second in the Silver band competition Class Four on Saturday 30th of August.

The band has three sections - Junior, Intermediate and the Senior band.

There are about ten members in the Junior Band - they've all just started to play an instrument for the first time, they meet on Tuesday evenings between 7pm and 8pm to play as a group.

The Intermediate band meet between 8pm and 9pm on Tuesday evenings. This band was formed in 2003 for more advanced members of the Junior group and the younger members of the Senior band. Sue conducts both bands.

Sue also conducts the Senior Band together with Gareth Williams; they meet on Wednesday and Friday evenings between 7pm and 9pm.

The Band is constantly looking for new members. Any age and talent is welcomed, with excellent training provided by Sue. The Band would like to thank Sue for her dedication and commitment.

The Bandroom

The Nantlle Vale Band was one of the first brass bands to have it's own purpose built band room. The band room is in Talysarn and the band sill rehearses in it today.

There are plans to develop and renovate the band room in the near future - they hope to get disabled access, a level floor and central heating.

Competitions & Performances

Over the years the Band's committee has been working very hard to keep the tradition going. They play a vital role in the development of our community with many groups, chapels, churches, schools and retirement homes making the most of their support to raise money.

They have performed in Porthmadog, playing Christmas carols when the lights were switched on; a concert in Criccieth in May and arranged a Musical Evening in the Rotary Club Porthmadog in aid of Hope House Wales External link: Opens in a new window.

They have competed in many Class Four competitions:

Rhyl Festival of Bands June 2004 3rd
North Wales Silver Band Championship November 2004
The Welsh Regional Championship March 2005
National Eisteddfod July 2005 2nd


The Band went to Swansea in March 2005 to compete in a National Silver Band Competition, with the Talysarn and Nantlle Partnership funding the outing. It was a great experience that allowed the members to develop skills through competing against the best bands in Wales.

The Talysarn and Nantlle Partnership was set up to improve the society, environment and economy of Talysarn and Nantlle, and operates the Communities First programme in the area.

They have also received grants from the Communities First Trust Fund through the Assembly Government. In 2003 it allowed them to pay architects fees, trainer fees and to buy new music stands. In 2004 they received a grant, which allowed them to buy specialist music software, a digital copier and new chairs for the band.

They also received a grant from Mantell Gwynedd External link: Opens in a new window to allow the band to hold a master class on the 20th of February with Gavin Saynor - a European Champion, and band members from the famous YSB Band External link: Opens in a new window, Dewi Griffith and Shauna White.

The band recently received a National Lottery grant to buy new instruments which is believed to be the third set since the band was formed in 1865. The number of members has doubled since, mainly through the young people who have joined. They now have a wide variation of instruments (wind, percussion and drums) that provide fair opportunities to everyone including the disabled.

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