Formed in 1963, the Hampshire County Youth Bands aim to provide a wide range of performance and educational opportunities for brass and percussion students resident in Hampshire. It is funded by the Hampshire Music Service as part of the network of highly successful musical opportunities they provide.
The Hampshire County Youth Band heads the county youth band pyramid that also includes the Hampshire County Training Band and Hampshire County Junior Band. Each ensemble undertakes their own series of performances in Hampshire and beyond. This brass band structure enables students to work together in a variety of performance and educational opportunities. All three bands rehearse each Saturday morning during term time in Alresford near Winchester. In addition there is an Endangered Species Group tutoring beginners in some of the larger instruments. Auditions for membership are held each year.
Under the current director, Jock McKenzie, the Band has in recent times participated in the National Festival of Music for Youth (Royal Festival Hall, London) at which the Band gained the “highly commended performance award”. Subsequent to this the Band performed by invitation at the Schools Proms (Royal Albert Hall, London).