Registered Charity No. 1171293
The Ogmore Valley Silver Band was started by a few dissatisfied members of the Nantymoel Town Prize Band. A few members broke away to form the Ogmore Valley Silver Prize Temperance Band. The first rehearsal took place in a basement in Stormy Lane in 1893, and later moved to a more permanent building at the top of Stormy Lane.
Regrettably Nantymoel Prize Band came to an end in 1933 leaving the temperance band as the only band in the Ogmore Valley. As the band grew in numbers, a new band room was required. The band rehearsed for many years in an unused stable at the back of the Hope Chapel.
In 1960, another move was enforced, this time to the “Good Companion Club”, situated at the end of “Waun Wen”. There the band stayed for 28 years, but as a result of vandalism and decay setting in to the wooden building, a move had to be made again.
In 1989, for the first time in 96 years, the band had no facilities in which to rehearse in the Ogmore Valley. The band was kindly offered the facilities of Club Brynmenyn as a new home. The band stayed at Brynmenyn for 9 years.
The band celebrated it’s centenary year in 1993. To celebrate the occasion, a dinner was held at the Beach Hotel Port Talbot, and every band member was presented with a commemorative plaque.
A change of fortune came to the band when, after strenuous work by the committee, a National Lottery grant was awarded in 1997. With this money, it was possible to purchase the Vestry of Bethania Church, Ogmore Vale. After extensive alterations, the band proudly moved into its own bandroom in June, 1998. This resulted in the band having its first owned band room in 105 years of existence.
Throughout the band movement history in the Ogmore Valley, many excellent results have been achieved. Special mentions must be recorded regarding the 1932 first prize result at Crystal Palace. The money won was used to purchase a set of new instruments. At this occasion, the band was conducted by Mr Tom White from Ystradgynlais. More recently the band has enjoyed success under the direction of Mr Ivor Barnett. In 2003 the band played in the national finals, representing Wales, in Dundee and also In 2004 at the National Finals in Harrogate. Towards the end of 2009 Miss Alice Jones took over as musical director, and during her first year in charge she led the band to lift the runner-up trophy for section 3 in Wales.
Many of the band’s members have also achieved success in the solo field. During the contesting year of 1986, Alan Johns won the best soloist award while playing Three Inventions at Ammonford, and Metropolis at Treorchy, both on the soprano cornet. This achievement has now been equalled by Gwynfor Narbeth playing Suite Gothique in Neath in 1990 on soprano cornet, by Mark Tunster playing Tintagel at Ammonford in 1998 on trombone, and by Lee Roderick playing Labour and Love at Ebbw Vale and Burry Port in 2007.