TWO Tissington brass band players are recovering after marching their way into the Guinness Book of Records.
Edward Carr, 46, and his wife Margaret, 44, joined the Huddersfield Marathon Band at the London Marathon and managed the 26.2 mile circuit in an amazing 6 hours, 56 minutes and 44 seconds, smashing the previous world record of 7 hours and 22 minutes.
Margaret explained how the pair found themselves in the middle of London on their marathon challenge: “Two years ago we bought a caravan and joined the Caravan Club concert band. It’s just a small group of us who get together three or four times a year to play.
“We met last November at a rally and one of the chaps said ‘you’ll never guess what I am doing in April’. He explained that he was joining the Huddersfield Marathon Band and that they were planning to regain the World Record that they lost to Germany in 2012, after winning it in 2011.
“So seven of us from the caravan club decided to join in and go for it.
“There were 31 of us in the band and the Guinness World Record official rules state that we had to continuously march and play for the full 26.2 miles, with just 30 seconds allowed between songs – although the drummer had to beat continuously.”
Edward is Vice-Chairman of Ashbourne Town Band and he has never attempted anything like this before, although the pair of them completed a half marathon in Oulton in February as part of their training for London.
He said: “The group of us had never met before the event, so it was literally a case of meeting up on Saturday at the Excel pre-marathon event, and to our surprise the organisers had arranged for us to march onto the stage and play a few tunes. We were delighted how well received we were.
“It was a lot harder than I imagined to be honest, but the crowds motivated us enormously and what was really nice was our chosen charity, SENSE, had supporters all the way round the route.
“We have raised over £65,500 for SENSE so far, it’s a fantastic charity for deaf blind people so it feels like we have a double celebration – for regaining the World Record but also for helping fund-raise for such a good cause.”
The Huddersfield Marathon Band became the world’s first marching band to complete the London Marathon in 2011, and raised more than £30,000 for SENSE. They lost the record the following year, and there were no entries in 2013.
The band had a two-hour playlist for the event, which included songs such as Happy, Sweet Caroline, Funky Town and Build Me Up Buttercup.
Margaret said: “I really hope this record stands now. It was great fun, but I’m not sure I’ve got the energy to do it all again.”
The band’s fund-raising page is still accepting donations at www.justgiving.com/HMB2014