Tributes paid to South Shields brass band man who died in New Zealand

Colin Waggott, left, in 1949 with the Northern Area Championship Cup, alongside father Jim, right, and former National Junior Solo champion Maurice Murphy.
Colin Waggott, left, in 1949 with the Northern Area Championship Cup, alongside father Jim, right, and former National Junior Solo champion Maurice Murphy.

Tributes have been paid to a South Shields brass band luminary who was a ‘master of his craft’.

Colin Waggott, who was a member of the Harton Colliery Band in his formative years, has died in Paeroa, New Zealand, aged 81.

Colin made a most substantial contribution in the world of brass and RAF bands, being remembered for many wonderful performances, and being a master of his craft with ability par excellence

Bob Wray

Along with his father Jim, and numerous other family members, he had helped to maintain the enviable reputation of the band.

Colin joined the Harton Colliery Junior Band in 1943, before being promoted to the senior band in 1946.

However, he was called up for national service in 1951, and enlisted in the Royal Air Force for five years, where he continued his musical career with the RAF College Band Cranwell, and later with the RAF No3 Regional Band in West Germany.

After leaving the RAF, he performed for the Manchester CWS Band and later the Fairey Aviation Works Band, before he and wife Enid emigrated to New Zealand in 1974.

Bob Wray, who was a member of the Harton and Westoe Colliery Band between 1959 and 1983, and is also the band’s vice-president and former secretary, said: “Colin made a most substantial contribution in the world of brass and RAF bands, being remembered for many wonderful performances, and being a master of his craft with ability par excellence.

“Colin was a fine personality, most sociable, good company, an interesting conversationalist, of a gregarious nature and with a fund of knowledge gleaned from a very wide experience of banding at its very best.

“On behalf of old friends and former colleagues in the local district, most sincere condolences are tendered to his dear wife Enid and all of his family members.”