6. “Migration – This is the Tempest Long Foretold” – Tuba/Eb Bass



Reaching a peak of over two million in 1921, the numbers out of work never fell below a million between the wars. Depressed post war conditions were made worse by the slump of 1929-33. Some industrial towns faced growing hardship as coal, cotton, shipbuilding, iron and steel went into sharp decline. A huge proportion of the working population sought employment in more affluent areas. The Government’s ‘Special Areas Policy’ helped workers move away to find work – leaving broken communities behind. Lone bandsmen played on, finding new opportunities to perform for example in their new ‘works’ bands, big bands or tourist resorts.

Of which, at the instance
Of sound, smell, change and stir,
New-old shapes for ever
Intensely recur.

Can You Remember (Excerpt) – Edmund Blunden, 1937

Smoke-stacks, coal-stacks, hay-stacks, slack,
Colourless, scentless, pointless, dull;
Railways, highways, roadways, black,
Grantham, Birmingham, Leeds and Hull.

From the Train (Excerpt) – Nancy Cunard, 1916