The band has established an international presence through a number of international tours which have taken place in recent years, including trips to Canada, Poland and Belgium. Each year we aim to go abroad on tour or to welcome an overseas band to the UK, forming strong and lasting friendships. Preparations for our next tour are underway - The band will be the visiting guests of the Bridgewater Fire Deparment Band in Canada in Summer 2013.
The WYFRS Band visiting Bridgewater Fire Department, Nova Scotia, Canada, in 2010
In 2000 the band took part in an international music festival in Izegem, in Belgium, which was the band's first tour.. Since then the band have returned to Belgium four times. In November 2007, the band was honoured to be invited to participate in the Last Post and Remembrance Day ceremonies at the Menin Gate at Ypres, Belgium. We have had return visits there for Remembrance Day ceremonies in 2009, 2011 and 2012. The band plan to visit Ypres again for the 100 year anniverary in 2014.
The WYFRS band outside the Cloth Hall in Ypres, Belgium, in 2009
We have an exchange relationship with the Band of the Voluntary Fire Brigade of Lubartów, Poland. They visited Yorkshire in September 2007 and we consequently saw a return visit to Poland in 2008. Contact remains with our friends in Poland, and on each occasion that WYFRS band has palyed in Ypres, there have always been representatives from Poland.
The combined bands from WYFRS and the Voluntary Fire Brigade of Lubartów at the Royal Armouries in Leeds, 2007
Since then the band has also exchanged visits with the Bridgewater Fire Department Band in Nova Scotia, Canada. THe WYFRS band spent a week in Canada during 2010 and then welcomed the Canadians to the UK during the summer of 2011. The band will return in Summer 2013.
We are always interested to hear from bands, especially those with links to the Fire Service. Please do get in touch.