Two Manx bands have qualified for the final of the UK National Brass Band Championships.

Manx Concert Brass, Ramsey Town Band and Onchan Silver Band competed in the North West Regional Championships at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens at the weekend.

Manx Concert Brass and Ramsey Town Band were third in their sections to qualify for the national finals in Cheltenham in September.

Manx Concert Brass, directed by Ian Clague MBE, were first to play out of 16 bands in the first section, with Phil Lawrence’s arrangement, A Day in the Life of a Knight.

Adjudicators praised the band’s ‘musical approach’ and playing with ‘sparkle’.

Ian said: ‘Naturally we are all thrilled at the result which is the culmination of many months’ hard work and dedication from all involved.

‘The North West is probably one of the most difficult in the UK to qualify from because it has such a high concentration of leading brass bands but a team effort has paid off and this has put a smile on everyone’s faces.’

He added: ‘To qualify for the national finals in September is a real feather in the cap and we are absolutely delighted.’

Ramsey Town Band competed in the fourth section. Their test piece was Hungerford Town by Darryl Barry.

The adjudicators praised the soloists and overall sound of the band.

Musical director Robert Quane said: ‘The band performed to their very best and really deserved the result and positive comments of the adjudicators. We’re really pleased and look forward to the opportunity to play in the nationals.’

Onchan Silver Band were placed eighth with their performance of Chorale and Toccata. A spokesman said: ‘Unfortunately the results we received were a little disappointing however as a band we are very pleased with what we’ve been able to produce.’