A Feast of Sun, Ceremony & Jazz Covent Garden Marching Band Style!

The Lord Mayor of Westminster, Cllr Ian Adams, and Graham Chase, Chairman of The Covent Garden Trust), applaud as Town Cryer Alan Myatt gets the march off to a swinging start!

Should you have been in Covent Garden, London, by 4.30pm on Thursday, 22nd June, you would have been witness to one of the City’s unique and more flamboyant events:
The 20th Annual Covent Garden Rent Collecting Ceremony.

Mustered into action by the Covent Garden Town Cryer, Allen Myatt, City Dignitaries and Covent Garden Trust Officials led a parade of residents and entrepreneurs and The Covent Garden Jazz Marching Band, followed, and even surrounded by a host of bemused sightseers, tourists
and jazz fans.

“A Weird and Wonderful Occassion!”
The annual ceremony fully merits the description of “a weird and wonderful occasion when the Chairman and Trustees march around the Piazza, accompanied by the Town Crier and a jazz band, to pay the “peppercorn rents” of five red apples and five posies of flowers for the buildings, known as The Protected Lands, on which the Trust owns a 150-year headlease.”

Very special thanks go to The Covent Garden Trust for permitting Jazz&Jazz to feature the occasion, to the leader of the Marching Band, Chris Hodgkins, and to Marching Band
Co-oridinator Tim Wacher for inviting us to film the event.

So without further ado here is the Jazz&Jazz Annual Report on the ceremony, told with a presentation of stunning photographs and fascinating YouTubes. My special thanks go to Jazz&Jazz Photographer Laurence Cumming for his brilliant shots, supplementing my Jazz&Jazz YouTubes. We are both privileged and grateful to have become integral to this annual event, and to work so closely alongside the Trust’s very patient and accommodating official photographer, Pete Jones.

The rent is paid, red apples and a bouquet of flowers!

The Musicians
Chris Hodgkins (Leader & trumpet); John Keen and Digby Fairweather (trumpets); Julian Mark Stringle (clarinet); Ian Bates (tenor sax); Eric Gilchrist (alto sax); Alan Bradley (banjo); Mike Godwin (sousa); Ben Martyn (bass drum); Don Cook (side drum); Chris Gower and Phil Brown (trombones). John Wacher (trumpet, cornet) & Tim Wacher (trombone) joined the band for the Courtyard Concert.

Stepping out to the beat of the drum!

Calling a halt for a musical photo session.

Happy Birthday, Covent Garden Trust. Fantastic auditorium! Great acoustics!

For the record, a photographer’s dilemma:

WiFi interference? Certainly I was having problems and it seems I wasn’t the only one!

Sadly, as a result I was unable to film at the Courtyard Concert this year, so here is a fun clip of Digby and Julian in 2016:

Also Tim Wacher had asked me to film Savoy Blues. Sorry Tim, due to the temporary fault, no go. But to save the day, here is the 2015 Covent Garden Concert version.

The 2017 Courtyard Concert. Great acoustics!

Peter M Butler
Editor & Proprietor Jazz&Jazz

(Photos by Jazz Photographer Laurence Cumming © Jazz&Jazz)
(YouTubes © Peter M Butler, Jazz&Jazz)

Be Sure to Visit:

The Covent Garden Marching Band – Laurence Cumming’s Photo Story

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