Mainline Big Band (Bedford)

Background Information


  In 1979 the Bedford trumpeter Geoff Allen decided that since Bedford had close links with Glenn Miller the town should have its own Big Band. The result was the birth of the MAINLINE Big Band. The band performed regularly in the local area and and eventually its popularity spread and the band was invited to play at the Savoy Hotel in London. Today the band plays at private functions, birthday parties, weddings, and dances.


The band has also played at the US Air Force Bases at Chicksands, Alconbury, Molesworth and Croughton and at the annual Glenn Miller festival at Twinwoods from where Miller flew, sadly for the last time. The famous Old Warden Air Museum at Shuttleworth has hosted the band during their Air Shows in the summer.


Photograph taken at the Shuttleworth Air Show, Old Warden


The Mainline was formed with the intention of performing and perpetuating the wonderful music of the big band era and this aim is being upheld to this day


The library spans some 100 years and includes the works of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Frank Sinatra and even newer artists such as Elvis Presley, the Beatles, Stevie Wonder and Chuck Mangione.


The band's current line up includes:
  • 5 Saxes
  • 3 Trumpets
  • 3 Trombones
  • 4-piece rhythm section incorporating piano, bass, guitar and drums
  • 2 Vocalists


Four studio recordings have been made of the band, the latest being “Swinging Down the Tracks” made to commemorate the bands 25th Anniversary and the 60th Anniversary of the end of World War 2.


We will be celebrating our 40th Anniversary in 2019.

The Band rehearses most Sunday evenings, between 7.30pm and 9.30pm at the Kempston Hammers Sports and Social Club, 134 High Street, Kempston, Bedford MK42 7BN. You're more than welcome to drop in and have a listen (they have a bar as well). Any Musicians wishing to come along to join in are also welcome. If you are planning on coming along, whether to listen or sit in, we would recommend you contact us ahead of time to confirm the rehearsal is taking place (see contact page).