Friday evening sunshine and a foot-stomping crowd outside the Castle and Ball saw the launch of the 2014 Marlborough International Jazz Festival.
But the Festival started on a sombre note with Festival director Nick Fogg announcing the death of Robert Hill of the local Hills Group – he had been a sponsor of the festival for all its 28 years. The crowd observed a short silence in his memory.
The Festival was officially launched by Ashley Fox, MEP for the south west of England. He did not make a speech, but after thanking Nick Fogg and his band of volunteers, simply declared the proceedings open. What a wise politician!
Another VIP guest was singer Daryl Sherman from New York. She used to sing with the legendary Artie Shaw band – but she chided Nick Fogg that she was not quite as much of a senior musician as he had implied!
And there to set the Festival on its merry way were St John’s Band, the Rabbit Foot Spasm Band and Sara Spade and the Noisy Boys.