Ron, 84, still hitting right notes with Great Yarmouth Brass Band

A DEDICATED brass band player is hitting the right notes and is celebrating playing instruments all over the world for 70 years.

Ron Larkins, 84, who lives in Plover Close, Bradwell, with his wife Madeleine, plays the E flat bass euphonium in the Great Yarmouth Brass Band.

His journey into brass band music started when he joined the Salvation Army Junior band when he was 15-years-old.

Mr Larkins said: “My parents moved to a flat in Bury St Edmunds and the people upstairs asked if I wanted to join the young people’s group at the Salvation Army. A retired band member from Clacton said he was going to teach us all how to play an instrument.”

This sparked his passion for music and when he completed his military training aged 18, he joined the 9th Queens Royal Lancers as a euphonium and French horn player.

Mr Larkins, who has three daughters, six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren joined the Great Yarmouth brass band in 1977 playing an E flat bass. The group meet up and practice once a week.

He said: “I am known as Mr Brass Band because I have been there a long time. I’m the eldest member of the band.”

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Throughout his musical career he has played three times in Edinburgh at the Military Tattoo Festival and at Holyrood Palace in Scotland in front of the Queen.

He added: “I enjoy it as much as I always did - I won’t be leaving the band any time soon. I think it helps with my health because you use a different type of breathing, it’s much deeper and more controlled.

“It’s a useful hobby to have. We perform and raise money for charities and we do Christmas concerts. I have also played at the Trooping of the Colour Parade in Berlin.”