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Preston Citadel Band celebrates centenary in style

The Preston Citadel Band (top), under the baton of Stuart Lees, and the band in 1924.

‘Thanking God for the Past – Looking to the Future’ was the theme for the Preston Citadel Band Centenary Celebration in Melbourne.

“In a jubilant celebration of faith and musical devotion, the Preston Citadel Band marked its centenary with a breathtaking concert that resonated through time and hearts,” said Major Mim Adams, Preston Corps Officer.

Special guest Roger Trigg performs a solo during the concert.

“This momentous occasion brought together a century’s worth of dedication, service, talent and Christian fellowship.”

The celebrations included three events and plenty of time for social interaction, reminiscing and reconnection for those who returned to Preston Corps for the celebration. Events were live-streamed throughout Australia and overseas for those who couldn’t attend in person.

Special guests for the weekend were previous corps officers Majors Graeme and (Dr) Christine Faragher and former bandmaster, composer Roger Trigg from the United Kingdom and Ireland Territory.

A board of memorabilia on display over the Centenary Celebrations weekend.

Christine reminded the audience that just as musicians use breath appropriately to play their instruments, Christians need to share their faith by breathing in and out God’s love.

The band, under the leadership of Stuart Lees who spent months planning the centenary celebrations, played the world premiere of God of the Ages, specifically composed by Roger for the centenary.

An afternoon of praise included an interview by Major Matt Reeve, Territorial Head of Mission, who grew up at Preston Corps and left for Officer Training College from there. He interviewed former bandmasters David Collett and Merv Collins.

Major Matt Reeve interviews former bandmasters David Collett and Merv Collins.

Merv’s book, A Band for All Seasons, was launched during the evening as a record of the band’s 100 years of service and ministry, including its history-making tours of Japan and Taiwan in the 1990s.

Historical memorabilia showcased many aspects of the band’s mission throughout the past 100 years.

“Preston Citadel Band’s centenary concert was not just a musical performance; it was a testament to the enduring power of faith and community,” Mim said. “The band members, past and present, came together in a heart-warming display of unity, reflecting the unchanging message of love and hope found in Christian teachings. Here’s to another century of faith-filled melodies!”


A copy of Merv Collins’ book, A Band for All Seasons, is available by emailing for a copy to be posted anywhere in Australia for $40. A review of the book can be viewed by clicking here


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