Busselton Brass: The Musical Heart of our Community since 1871

Money Matters

A history of Fund Raising for the Band

Busselton Brass has always been a not for profit community organisation.

 Life in the band was quite simple in the earlier days compared to the way things are now. If they felt like it the band could march in the streets, play in the park or down on the foreshore. They just took out their instruments, folding stools & music stands and sat and played. Nowadays there can be a lot of paperwork and cost involved.   Nothing happens until the paperwork is done, permission given and sometimes roads closed.

Since the band started in 1871 it has always been necessary to raise funds to keep the band solvent. Over the years the band has tried numerous ways to raise funds in order to keep the band in instruments, music and general running costs. Minutes and newspaper articles from the early days shed a light on the various things that band members have done in an effort to keep the band functioning i.e.

1905: The first mention of Busselton Brass activities in a newspaper was in 1905. The band held a concert to raise funds for new uniforms.  The writer also commented on how much the band had improved over the past 12 months. He said, “they had rendered several numbers in a creditable fashion”.

1913:  Funds were needed to purchase instruments, music and other equipment. Collectors were appointed and their job was to walk around the streets of the town, in uniform, with a collection box, collecting donations in the street and from shop keepers.

1915: It was reported that the bank balance was 15 pounds, 3 shillings & fourpence. The Conductor’s salary was to be 26 pounds per year. Other money was raised by playing at events, such as a New Year’s Eve dance. They were paid 2 pounds, 2 shillings for the evening.

1928: Finances had improved.  In the first half of the year they received 51 pounds from the business community.  In that year band members moved that the band pay up to 15 shillings a week to a band member until he was able to buy food for himself. In return he was asked to be a collector of money for the band.

1930: The committee decided that money from engagements was to be shared amongst the bandsmen – they had to be registered and pay their affiliation, and play their part to the satisfaction of the bandmaster to qualify.

A points system was established – 10 marks for punctual attendance, 5 marks for late attendance (up to 15 minutes), no marks for absentees.  At the end of the year the marks were totalled and each member was paid pro-rata of the amount due to him.

The following offences led to a 25 mark deduction – leaving the band room without permission during practice periods or during a performance, any act of misbehaviour, unnecessary obscene language. (I wonder what was seen as necessary??)

If a band member resigned because he was leaving the area, he would be paid what was owed.  However, if he resigned without a reasonable cause he forfeited all claims on the bonus fund.

They were a tough crowd back then!!

Because the Band has always been a not for profit, community group, fund raising has always been of great importance if the band was to continue.  So we give thanks to all the people who have supported the Band, either in small or large ways, because without that support we wouldn’t still be here. 

Naturally this leads on to saying that our costs have risen quite dramatically in the last few years. Our oncosts, before we even think of buying music or new instruments, is substantial. We would appreciate your support to keep the Band financial, whether it be through sponsorship, donations or general help and advice.

Donations can be made online or in person (we will be happy either/or!!). Our account information is:

      * NAME: Busselton Brass

      * BANK: Bendigo Bank

       * BSB:  633-000

       * A/C:   202017471