The band is an amalgamation of the Dalkeith Burgh and Monktonhall Colliery Brass Bands. The bands came together as one body in 1989 when financial hardship and a lack of players prompted both to get together and form one band.
The Dalkeith Burgh band was originally named the “Dalkieth and Westfield Trade Band”. It’s not known when the band was founded, but it was in existence in 1892 when it led a procession in Dalkeith to welcome a visit from William Gladstone.
In 1904 the band changed its name to “Dalkeith and Westfield Trade Band” in order to gain a wider support. That same year the band led a parade in honour of Winston Churchill.
In 1905 the band received a grant from the town council after a vote. There’s no trace of when the band went out of being, but it must have been before 1911 as it didn’t take part in various reported events.
The band was revived as the “Dalkeith Burgh Band” sometime before 1929 (an exact date again is unknown) as it led the Gala Day procession in that year. In more recent times the band attracted funding from the coal industry.
The predecessor of the Monktonhall band was formed in 1918. It was registered as a competition band in 1921 as “Prestonlinks Colliery Silver Band” and rehearsed in Port Seton, East Lothian
The Prestonlinks Pit closed in the early 1960’s. The band then became known as “Prestonpans & District Miners Band” until in 1964 sponsorship from the Monktonhall colliery came along and the title of Monktonhall Colliery Silver Band was adopted.
The colliery was situated in Midlothian and the band rehearsed in Prestonpans, East Lothian. Nowadays, with the colliery closed & demolished, the only contemporary references to “Monktonhall” are some farm steadings, street and other place names in and around the Musselburgh & Millerhill areas.
The band’s name is based on tradition from the past, however, nowadays, the band attracts players from all over the East/Mid and West Lothians, and Edinburgh City areas. Despite this, the band still strives to integrate with the original specific communities.
The amalgamated band rehearses in premises in Prestonpans leased from the East Lothian Council. This arrangement was a convenience at the time of amalgamation; no suitable premises were available in Midlothian in 1989.