‘The Long Story’ Section of The Site Is Finally Concluded.

As I write this paragraph it’s the 19th of November 2019, eighty nine years and six days after Thomas Edward Bulch passed away bringing the story of “The Wizard and The Typhoon” to a close, and I have just concluded writing up an online account of their lives, based upon all our research notes to date, with all the twists and turns therein. The Long Story, for those who have the time and the will to read it, has been almost two years in the making and gives the best account I have been able to collate of just exactly what Thomas Edward Bulch and George Allan achieved in their lifetimes, and how. I hope it proves to be of some value to researchers, brass enthusiasts, historians or decedents.

In many ways, though, this is not an ending but a beginning. The beginning of a new phase in this project to both refine what we have, for it is imperfect and there is more to learn, and to share it with our community and beyond. I hope you will follow us during the next leg of our journey.

An Opportunity to Hear Tom Bulch’s Piano Composition Style.

Eric Tomkins, T E Bulch’s grandson, found this recording of Tom Bulch’s piano march “Torchlight Parade” on the ‘Australian War Memorial’ site, who have kindly granted permission for us to include it here (below).

“Torchlight Parade (piano)” by Thomas E Bulch (perf. by Alan Hicks – prod. Chris Latham)

The Story of Tom Bulch and George Allan is just one of the great untold stories of Victorian New Shildon.

We maintain a Blog on the site setting out anything significant we’ve been learning about in understanding the lives of George Allan and T. E Bulch. In our latest post, added in November 2019, explores how life turned out for one of the other old Shildonians that emigrated to Australia in 1884 with Tom Bulch. Up to now we have no idea what cornetist James Scarff looked like – until we found this article from 1921 with a photograph – read James Scarff, Unmasked

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Treat yourself: “The Music of George Allan” on CD

We’re happy to tell you that we’ve been able to get this terrific CD of marches by George Allan re-pressed so that the music can be heard by even more people. The CD features the Ever Ready Band, Barnard Castle Band, Langbaurgh Brass and Ferryhill Town Band and includes 13 of George’s best works: “The Wizard”, “Imperioso”, “Impetus”, “Shawville”, “Lefebvre”, “Battle Abbey”, “Raby”, “Diomed”, “Bravura”, Jupiter”, The Diplomat”, “Knight Templar”, “Senator”.

What’s great about this is that every purchase of this CD (priced at £10) will help contribute to our research and promotion of George Allan and T E Bulch, so we can remind the world of their incredible story. Get your copy HERE

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A ‘Great Hunt’, to Find More Missing Compositions, has Begun

We got to hear the first selection of pieces from our collection at Ushaw College, Durham, on Saturday 4th August 2018. It was absolutely brilliant

Thank you so much to everyone who attended. We’ll be adding some great new content from that event to this site soon.

Now though, the researching and searching resumes as we attempt to track down more of the compositions and arrangements that are key to understanding George Allan and Thomas Edward Bulch. So, with this in mind, we’ll be launching a ‘Great Hunt’ to see if we can find more missing pieces with the help of brass bands around the banding community. If you can help please do get in touch.

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    1. To follow our latest discoveries – READ OUR BLOG
    2. To read a short account of George Allan – READ ABOUT GEORGE: ‘The Wizard’
    3. To read a short account of Thomas Bulch – READ ABOUT THOMAS: ‘The Typhoon’
    4. To hear their music go to our – AUDIO COLLECTION
    5. If you want snippets on progress as they occur – OUR TWITTER FEED

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Our mission: here is to gather, and share, as much as we can about the lives, and work, of these two remarkable Victorians (and in the case of T. E. Bulch that term applies in more than one sense) for the benefit of the people of the community from which they emerged, for the brass band fraternity as a whole, and for those who love a great story stuffed to the gills with coincidence, tragedy, triumph and magnificent music, some of which you can hear right here.

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About Us

The Friends of the Wizard and Typhoon, formed in 2018, are a group of individuals united by a common goal to rediscover, preserving and retell the stories of, and promote the music of, the brass band composers and legendary bandmasters, Thomas Edward Bulch and George Allan.

Why these two gentlemen alone? Well, whilst it’s true that there have been a great many bandmasters and composers of brass music, what binds these two together is the unusual fact that they were born just fifteen months apart only a couple of streets away from each other in the young railway town of New Shildon. These days their respective legacies have sadly become a distant and vague memory despite the incredible things they achieved on a truly global stage. We’d like very much to change that.

Throughout the lifetime of this group we propose to execute a number of related projects to:

1 – Rediscover, and retell, the stories of the two composers

2 – Collect the music they composed

3 – Seek opportunities for the community to hear the music performed

4 – Preserve a record of the stories and music

5 – Create a lasting legacy in a way that will benefit, and perhaps inspire, the people of Shildon, of the North East of England and the brass banding fraternity and fans of brass music everywhere

Group members include bandsmen, former bandsmen, and non-bandsmen. We welcome anyone who would care to join us on this journey and who is happy to share in our goals and ambitions. If you’d be interested contact us using contact@wizardandtyphoon.org

Current officers of the Group

Hon. Patrons: – Mr. Eric Stanley Tomkins (grandson of Thomas E Bulch), Mr. Richard Evans

Chair: – Mr. Daniel Childs

Secretary: – Mr. Dave Reynolds

Treasurer: – Ms. Kelly Ambrosini