Goldsprings True Defenders, Comber - 19-07-08

The band headed for the short trip to Comber to support the host band Goldsprings True Defenders; it has been a few years since we paraded in Comber and its always a good parade.

Under the bridge in Comber is always a hot bed of supporters cheering the visiting bands, the bridge was well marshalled by both Goldsprings and 36th Bands Association; well done to them all as they done a great job controlling the crowds.

I managed to see the Gertrude Star heading off in their new uniform just as Sons of Ulster from Newtownards where decked out in their new one too! I also just saw the Lower Woodstock finishing off their parade route.

Comber has a good route and as usual good crowds around the square and bridge points; the PSNI where out in force and I am sure the Blue Bag Brigade (BBB) got a wee shock, as Iíve said before I am in favour of the Police dealing with the drunken culture that seem to tag along with the band scene; these people are not wanted and are a major hindrance to some parades.

Tonight we paraded with 11 side drummers, 27 flute corps, 2 bass drummers and a colour party of 5. This was a decent turnout for the band during this 12th fortnight when a lot of members take their annual holidays.

Colour Party Drum Corps Drum Corps Bass Drummer Flute Corps Flute Corps

We played solid all night and it was great to parade on good roads and a good crowd to egg us on. We where lit and our bass drummers where light thunder and lightning we are blessed to have the best out there and if they arenít the best then they certainly are not far off it!

Our drum corps and flute corps where very solid and we all combined to play perfectly all night; a really good performance by the whole band and a good bond between all members.

I noticed that tonight there wasnít the big turnout of bands as this parade would usually bring to Comber; but again holidays and 12th hangovers all add up to low turnouts at this time of the year, I am sure that over the next couple of weeks these figures will improve greatly.

I enjoyed the parade tonight, a real feel good factor in both our band and the parade.

Under the bridge we played a couple of our new tunes Recess and Kentucky, the band played them very well and the noise under the bridge was immense, it made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on it ends!

On the night we won most of the Blood & Thunder awards; we are pleased with that but more pleased with my own band all over the weekendís parades. After the 12 itís back to normal from the Pilgrims.

Well done Goldsprings and to the people of Comber for a good parade and a good night out.

John Keenan
East Belfast Protestant Boys Flute Band Chairman

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