Navan is to host the 49th Annual National Band Championships this coming April, following over a year’s work by Paul Byrne of the Navan Silver Band.Mayor of Navan, Cllr Francis Deane, announced details of the event at a reception in the Solstice Arts Centre, attended by the secretary of the Irish Association of Brass and Concert Bands, Stephen Murray, and local public representatives and dignatories.Cllr Deane said: “It is a great honour that Navan was chosen to host these 49th Annual Championships this year, to be held in Solstice Arts Centre on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th April. They will feature bands from all over the country. This is a great economic boost for the town of Navan.”He announced that the County Arts Office has commissioned, in partnership with Navan Silver Band, a new piece of music to be premiered as a competition piece at these championships.“The piece is being composed by Oscar nominated Brian Byrne, a Navan native, and former member of the Navan Silver Band,” Cllr Deane added.After the Nationals, Brian will be premiering this in the Solstice in May.The mayor thanked Paul Byrne who has been instrumental in the driving force behind organising this event.
Attending the launch, Cllr Shane Cassells said that as well as the formal concerts, he was looking forward to impromptu session that the bands would be having at various locations around the town. He also paid tribute to Paul Byrne for bringingthe championships to the town.
Navan Chamber of Commerce said it is looking forward to working with and supporting local event organisers to make their events as successful as possible. Paul Byrne has worked hard to successfully bring the 2014 National Band Championship to Navan and chamber vice-president Frank Harrington believes this is a very positive event for local business and thanks him for his efforts. “This has the potential to bring up to 3000 visitors to Navan over the two days,” he stated. “Local businesses will benefit from this and we have the opportunity to showcase Navan to these new visitors. The Chamber will be working with Paul to provide the bands with special offers from their members to ensure they enjoy their stay in Navan and hopefully return to Navan on a more regular basis. We would call on cafes, restaurants or any other businesses with offers to contact us so that we can showcase Navan on this important weekend to make their stay as enjoyable as possible and hopefully encourage them to return for future events. We also hope to run a similar promotion for the Choral Festival taking place on the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th May and future festivals throughout the year.”