Mercer & Barker are delighted to announce that Soprano Supremo Paul Richards has joined the family as Performance and Development Artist (Soprano Cornet).

Paul has worked closely with the team over the past few months developing his New Signature Mouthpiece (MB1-PR) and also adding valuable input into shaping the development of the full range.

Please have a read of Paul’s Bio below:

Paul Richards

Soprano Cornet


Paul is well known as the soprano cornet player for the Flowers Band, with whom he has competed at the highest level, winning various titles and solo awards including the best soloist at the National Finals in 2015 and the Best Soloist at Brass in Concert 2018. Prior to this, Paul’s playing career spans many more aspects and levels of the brass band world.

Paul started his playing career in Cornwall and in his early years progressed through Mount Charles Band and then into St Austell Band (under Albert Chappell), eventually assuming the principal cornet chair. He also held the same chair for the Cornwall County Youth Brass Band. After his job took him to Bristol, Paul joined the Sun Life Band, assuming the principal cornet chair in 1988, a position he held for five years, playing under greats like Roy Newsome, Richard Evans and Geoffrey Brand. During this time the band won the British Open, the WMC Kerkrade world title, and produced a legacy of recordings and concert performances.

After a long period when concentrating on family and career, Paul came back into banding when his son joined the local Swindon Brass youth band. After a split within the senior band, Paul helped set up and became Chair of the Great Western Youth Band, an independent umbrella organisation for three youth bands with over 100 young players and a team of tutors. He held this position for ten years, seeing the organisation grow in terms of players, turnover and standards. The band remains in excellent shape, providing tutoring and banding for many young players. Paul is very proud that a significant number of these players now play for top local bands and in the British Army Brass Band.

On the back of this, Paul was involved with the setup of Brunel Brass, which successfully combined young players and more senior players into a new band that went on to win four regional and two national titles, moving from Section 4 to the championship section over a six year period. Paul was fortunate to be part of both these organisations in both playing, organisational and mentoring roles. It was only the chance of moving to Flowers and playing once again at the highest level that saw him move on from these great times in grass roots banding.

Paul joined the Brass Bands England Board in the Autumn of 2021 bringing a combination of experience of performance at all levels alongside a deep understanding of senior roles in business.

Paul plays his M&B Signature mouthpiece the MB1-PR on his Stomvi Soprano Cornet.

Paul Richards M&B Soprano Cornet Performance and development Artist             Soprano cornet mouth piece by M&B

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