The information herewith has been kindly provided to this blog by Stage Manager Martin Jones and Festival Director Lucy Clayden from Harrogate International Youth Festival (HIYF) (website, Wikipedia). All pictures by Martin Jones.
The very first abroad trip of the band was to Harrogate International Youth Bands Festival (as it was called at the time), Harrogate, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom in March-April 1975. This visit led by professor Hiramatsu (see his recollection of the trip here, scroll down to “UK Tour in 1975”) is still, as far as we know, the only visit of the band to Europe.
This was the third year the Festival was arranged and the 50-member strong “Kyoto Girls’ High School Band”* had the honor of being the first Far Eastern band attending. Band had a very busy week from March 26 to April 2 with parades and concerts in Harrogate, and also nearby towns of Ilkley and Knaresborough.
* – Professor Hiramatsu clarified that the band was a joint band composed of 30 members of Tachibana, 19 members from St. Agnes’ School and one member from Kyoto Prefectural Yamashiro High School, and therefore it was called “Kyoto Girls’ High School Band”.
In addition to the above the band likely would have attended events not open to public but record of those does not exist any more.
Also in the following year there were “Kyoto Concert Band” attending the Festival. As per the recollection of professor Hiramatsu this band was all boys’ band (at the time) Espoir Wind Orchestra made out of students and alumni of Hanazono Gakuen and led by professor Kunio Niida (1936-1999).
Here’s hoping that the band would visit the Old Continent again some time!