HC Deb 06 May 1889 vol 335 cc1235-6

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that the principal festival in South Staffordshire for its mining and iron making community are the fetes held annually at Whitsuntide, by permission of the Earl of Dudley, in the grounds surrounding the ruins of Dudley Castle; that these fêtes are of an entirely non-political character, the profits arising from them being applied in support of various charitable institutions; that they have been held continuously for a period of 40 years, the average attendance being about 30,000 persons, and one of the principal attractions having been hitherto military bands; that last year, and again this year, permission has been refused for bands to attend, although this year a memorial upon the subject has been presented to the War Office, signed by the Mayor, Clergy, and other principal inhabitants in the town; that last year the committee of the fêtes supplied the place of a military band by engaging the Hungarian and other bands, which, however, were found unsuited for the locality and concourse of people; and, whether he will bring these facts under the notice of H.R.H. the Commander in Chief, with the view that the withdrawal of the privilege of allowing military bands to attend the fetes in question may be in future re-considered?


No application appears to have reached the War Office as regards the Whitsuntide Fetes at Dudley Castle; but, considering their importance, as explained by my hon. Friend, any request for the attendance of a military band will have the favour-able consideration of His Royal Highness the Commander in Chief.

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