An article in ‘Temperance in Northamptonshire’ confirms 1858 as the year of formation of the band. The article describes that Mr Nathaniel Smith a Director of Smith and Grace, Iron Foundry, Midland Road was very involved in the Temperance Society, believing that keeping the workforce occupied would stop them from spending money in the public houses:
“The iron works at Thrapston had a staunch teetotaller for owner (Mr Nathaniel Smith) and in 1858 his employees formed a Temperance Brass Band which did good service in the County”.
The same source also states that a tea was held on Easter Tuesday 1858 (April 6th), in Raunds and a grand procession which paraded the streets was headed by Mr N Smith’s band from Thrapston. It is likely that this was the first performance the newly formed band gave. Mr Smith’s son Nathaniel Junior was a great musician and conducted the band for many years.
The band was never sponsored by the factory in a monetary sense but was provided with accommodation for practices and storage. In 1938 they opened a new canteen that was built specifically with the band in mind with a specially designed ceiling to create the right acoustics.
Unfortunately in 1939 the band was temporarily suspended due to the 2nd World War which meant instruments, uniforms etc were all placed in storage until 1952. Mr. G R Nairns lead the band until 1970 at which point , Mr Ray Jeffery took over the position of Temporary Conductor. Ray conducted the band up to 2013 when he retired from conducting and went back to playing in the band. The band was then under the baton of Kevin Spencer.
For over 100 years the band practised at Smith & Grace in Midland Road. After a period of time with no permanent place to rehearse the band settled at Thrapston Primary School for several years. In January 2006 the band moved to the Dodson & Horrell site where the band was based until 2020.
In October 2019, Nathan Waterman was appointed the band’s Musical Director. Having started his playing career at Thrapston Town Band Nathan went on to a highly successful playing career including a long term position as Solo Horn at Championship Section band GUS. On returning to TTB it was his objective to lead the band into a new and exciting era.
The band made a return to contesting in the fourth section in 2020. In 2021 the band moved to a new rehearsal venue at the Morrisons Manufacturing facility in Thrapston. The band remains extremely grateful to Morrisons for the use of their premises and for their ongoing support.
In 2022 the band achieved 3rd place in the Midlands Regional Brass Band Championships and came 2nd at the LBBA Open contest in Leicester. Spurred on by this success the band once again entered, and won, the Midlands Regional Brass Band Championships (Fourth Section) in 2023.
The band is now celebrating its 165th year and having been crowned the Fourth Section Champion Band 2023 at the Midlands Regional Brass Band Championships the band has been invited to take part in the Finals of the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain which will be held in Cheltenham in September 2023.