Former leader of the RBL Concert band in Spain, David Last, who has been directing the band since it’s formation, has decided to hang up his baton.

Speaking exclusively to The Leader Newspaper, David told of the immense enjoyment he has had working with the band and it’s members, as they have developed and gradually expanded in their five years of playing together.

“Now, however, my eyesight is beginning to show signs of deterioration and I am also finding it increasingly difficult to devote the necessary time to the bands’ musical arrangements, so I have decided to take a step back and let someone with a bit more energy take up the baton in my stead.”

Having trained as a musician at the world-famous Kneller Hall, the Royal Military School of Music, David went on to serve with the band of the Buffs (Royal East Kent Regiment), formerly the 3rd Regiment of Foot.

He travelled the world as an Army musician, went on to work with groups and bands across Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia, before returning to the UK where he took up an appointment as Principal with the Lyceum School of Music in Manchester.

David taught and conducted the Manchester Light Orchestra and the Symphonia Youth Band before retiring to Lo Crispin, close to Quesada, with his wife, Christine, in 2000.

On arriving in Spain David joined the ‘Alpengold Brass Band’, in which he played clarinet. He then moved on to ‘Just Brass’, eventually succeeding Julie Schofield as Musical Director.

He said that he has thoroughly enjoyed his time with the RBL Concert Band, although in recent years, rather too much interference from the hierarchy in Spain District North has made life extremely difficult for both himself and for Band members.

“The District Committee now insists on controlling all our bookings and our finances which, as we are all volunteer musicians, who simply play in the band for fun, now find the pressures too much. I have expressed concerns time and time again, but the burdens placed on the Band are now becoming unacceptable, so it is time for me to move on.”

However, David has no intention of stopping completely. He is determined to remain involved in music locally, with his next ambition being the creation of a string quartet.

“I am currently learning how to play the cello, along with a good friend who has recently bought a violin. We have colleagues who are keen to join with us just as soon as we reach a reasonable standard, so watch this space”!

You can rest assured that this is certainly not the ‘LAST’ time that you have heard from David.