A BARNSLEY charity is urging brass bands across the UK to step into the 21st Century and raise the profile of modern brass banding.

Brass Bands England Ltd has just announced an overhail with new branding, a new website and a comprehensive four-year strategy for growth so it can help UK bands.

Brass Bands England liaison and development officer Rachel Veitch-Straw said: “Around 100,000 people are involved in brass banding in England and brass band music is a valued part of our social and cultural landscape – but is often taken for granted.

“We have set ourselves clear aims to increase public awareness and appreciation of brass bands and to give the bands themselves professional support to help them survive and thrive as viable community enterprises in the 21st century.”

Brass Bands England is an Arts Council-funded organisation and already supplies its members with regular funding workshops, consultancy and support.

In the next four years, it proposes to develop its new website as an interactive information-sharing hub and negotiate new deals with commercial suppliers to brass bands, such as insurance providers, outfitters and events management companies.