IT WAS a roaring success last year and this year has proved just as popular.
As part of the Over 60’s Festival, a group of people were given the chance to take a tour around the Royal Marines School of Music, at Portsmouth Naval base.
More than two-dozen pensioners visited yesterday and enjoyed every moment of the tour from looking around the former detention facility to hearing a rehearsal of the Corps of Drums.
During the two-hour tour, they also got to see a rehearsal of the Royal Marines Band of Portsmouth.
James Pinney, marketing manager of the school, said: ‘We have been really delighted that we got the opportunity to invite people to the Royal Marines School of Music as part of the Over 60s Festival.
‘We are really pleased to be part of the project along with Portsmouth City Council.
‘We had 25 visitors yesterday and we will have the same amount next week and they get the chance to see the school of music in operation.
‘It was a regular day for us here and they saw the cells where the bands members practise.
‘We call them cells because they are in the formal navy detention centre.
‘They also had the chance to see the other facilities we have here as well as hearing one of our concert band rehearsals.
‘Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.’
For many of the visitors, their favourite part of the tour was sitting in on the rehearsals.
Jean Maxwell, 65, from Southsea, said: ‘I have had a great day and the band is just superb.
‘I felt really privileged to have been able to sit in and listen to them. The whole day has just been so interesting.’
And Julie Campbell agreed.
The 67-year-old, also from Southsea, said: ‘The band was great and the entire day has been fantastic.
‘It good to be able to see inside the school that is right on our doorstep.’
THE Over 60s Festival kicked off this week and is giving residents all over the city the chance to try something new.
Visiting the Royal Marines School of Music was one of the activities and Heather Todd was more than happy with the turn out.
The assistant events manager said: ‘This event is always very popular within the festival.
‘People enjoy coming here to see the school but to also listen to the band. We have had some fantastic feedback and I’m glad that the council can work with the naval base to make things like this happen.’
For more information on the festival visit portsmouth.gov.uk