Frank Wright was a renown resident of Smeaton, where he was born in 1901. He lived at Laura Villa, and attended Smeaton State School. His father William was a gold miner and his mother's name was Sarah. He was the youngest of eleven children. Their family won many singing and instrumental awards. Frank was tutored by Percy Code and was awarded a gold medal for the highest marks in the ALCM examinations in the British Colonies at the age of seventeen years. He became the Australian Open Cornet Champion by the age of eighteen. A year later, Frank conducted the City of Ballarat Band, and later the Ballarat Soldiers’ Memorial Band. He formed the Frank Wright Frisco Band and Frank Wright and his Coliseum Orchestra. These bands won many South Street awards, and Frank as conductor won many awards in the Australian Band Championship contest. In 1933 Frank Wright sailed to England to conduct the famous St Hilda’s Band and was appointed in 1934 as the Musical Director of the London County Council (the GLC or Greater London Council), where he organized many amazing concerts in most of the 150 parks, in and around the London district. He was also responsible for some of London’s major concerts at Kenwood, the Crystal Palace and Holland Park. He was made Professor of Brass and Military Band Scoring and Conducting and was a Fellow of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Frank was often invited to adjudicate Brass Band Championships around Europe, in Australia, including South Street and in New Zealand. Frank was awarded an M.B.E. in 1967 and he died in November 1970. The Frank Wright Medal at the Royal South Street competition is awarded to an individual recognized as making an outstanding contribution to brass music in Australia.
1). Sepia photograph of brick buildings with a conveyor between the top of one building to the bottom of another. Place is the St Hilda's Colliery in South Shields, England.
2). Sepia photograph of the notice board of the St. Hilda Church.
Inscriptions & markings
In pencil on back - 1). St Hilda Colliery, South Shields, Sept 1934
2). South Shields, St Hilda Church, first built 1256, Sept 1934