FROM a young age, Nicholas Childs was surrounded by music. Both his father and brother became conductors and it was only natural for Nicholas to follow in their footsteps.

Living in a small village in South Wales meant that Nicholas learnt to play the euphonium – a small tuba.

He said: “My father realised that I was very good at playing the Euphonium and said we would move to the north of England, so I could play in the best brass band in the world – and the next Thursday we did!”

Nineteen years ago, Nicholas became part of the Black Dyke Band - a brass band who have been running for 165 years.

Nicholas said: “I am the second longest conductor of the band, the first had been with them 37 years. It is in my DNA, it is what I love to do. To me, my work is not a job at all. There are many great orchestras but there is only one Black Dyke Band.”

The band is technically amateur but, as Nicholas said, they are Olympians – the band is still the best in the world.

Nicholas said: “Competitions are what we do best at – we are the best brass band in history. And concerts are the life blood of the band, we perform at over 50 a year.

“There is so much passion and dedication from people, they really want to be the best. There are some students who study in the UK just to play in the Black Dyke Band.”

The Black Dyke Band have worked with famous musicians, including Elton John, James Morrison, Hayley Westernra, the Beatles and many more.

Nicholas said: “There was a show where Elton John and the Spice Girls were performing, and the spice girls took three and a half hours to record a three minutes section with their band, whereas we recorded with Elton John and it took six minutes to perform a three-and-a-half-minute section. Elton John said we were the greatest brass band in the world.

“I always say to people that in the 60s, the most famous band was the Beatles. We were asked to work with them on Yellow Submarine. On side A, you had the Beatles and one side B, you had the Black Dyke Band.”

In August, the Black Dyke Band will be performing at the Bridgwater Operatic Society’s major fundraising event.

They will be performing on August 18 at 2:30pm in the newly refurbished St Mary’s Church in Bridgwater.

This performance will be one of the first performances where the Black Dyke Band will be performing a piece of music specially composed for them by Bruce Broughton.

This brand-new piece is called Heroes and is all about the Apollo 11 moon landing (the 50th anniversary was on July 20th).

To book or to find out more visit