|Founded in 1888 and
originally called The Sons of Temperance
Band. It was the musical arm of the
Sparkling Spring Lodge of the Sons of
Temperance which was just one of many
similar groups campaigning against the evils of
alcohol amongst the working classes in areas like
Grays, Tilbury etc. at that time. The members
were known as Brothers not bandsmen
and met every Monday night for practice above the
Queen Victoria Coffee Tavern in High Street,
Grays (now the HSBC Bank).
The first Bandmaster was Mr. W. Layzell who ran a
music shop in New Road, Grays. Brother A. Bradish
was the treasurer and Brother J. Cornhill was the
Secretary.. 1905 saw the arrival of Mr. Frank
Gray, from Durham, as bandmaster and the band
changed its name to the Grays and District
Temperance Band. They moved their practice
venue to premises above the Knowles and Tampkins
Mineral Water manufacturing works in Crown Road,
known as the Niagra Works. They subsequently
changed their name to the Grays Temperance
Silver Band. The name remained unchanged
until 1950 when it became known as Thurrock
In 1928 they moved their headquarters to John
Street. This was due to the fact that Frank
Francis bass trombonist and band member for over
50 years mortgaged his house to secure the
finances for the building for the band.
In 1987 the band became known as Grays Town Band.
The band have been Essex Champions 8 times and
have won overseas titles too. In 1945 they won
the Daily Herald Silver Challenge Cup and were
the youngest senior brass band to have won in the
history of the competition. 1946 saw them win the
Victory Band Contest at East Ham.
In 1991 the Band uniform was changed from brown
to royal blue and black. The outside of the Band
hall was also refurbished.