About the Band
Since winning the First Section National Championship title in 2010 – the only southern band ever to have done so - Friary Brass Band has progressed under the baton of MD Chris King to become the leading band in the South. Currently ranked 19th in the world and 12th in the UK, Friary has held the London & Southern Counties Champion Band title since 2015 and has appeared in the National Finals at the Royal Albert Hall each year since 2013. The Band has won the Audience Entertainment Award at Brass in Concert for the past two occasions, and the Most Entertaining Band award at Butlin’s Mineworkers Contest in 2015, 2017 and 2019. Founded in its current form in 1983, Friary takes its name from initial sponsor, Guildford’s Friary Meux brewery, and is now based near Woking, Surrey.
Over the years, the Band has played at many special occasions, including major sporting events such as the British Grand Prix and rugby internationals at Twickenham and Wembley, and for a local theatre company’s production of Brassed Off. A registered charity, Friary raises funds for the British Heart Foundation and the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance Trust, and in April 2015 was honoured to receive the Mayor of Guildford’s Service to the Community Award. Joint Concerts have been staged with Fairey, Brighouse & Rastrick and Cory, as well as with the North East Hants Area Schools Bands where two of the Band’s principal players started their banding careers.