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Padstow Lifeboat, The

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Malcolm Arnold

Malcolm Arnold (arr. Woodfield)

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This work bears the designation Opus 94.

General Info

Year: 1966
Duration: c. 4:00
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Brass Band
Publisher: Studio Music
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $85.00   |   Score Only (print) - $22.00


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

This march was written in 1966 to celebrate the opening of the new Padstow lifeboat station in the county of Cornwall. The music describes a lifeboat on an errand of mercy, assisted by warning signals from the lighthouse on the shore. Although the area in influenced by the tempering Gulf Stream and is known as the "Cornish Riviera," the storm-lashed west coast can be hazardous to passing ships during periods of low visibility. In a 1984 interview with Kevin Thompson, Malcolm Arnold stated, "Of all my brass and band pieces, it is Padstow Lifeboat which I like best."

- Program Note from March Music Notes

This marvelous march is full of the wit and humour that characterizes the music of one of Britain's greatest living composers. Padstow is a coastal village in Cornwall in the west of England, and whilst Arnold was writing this march he constantly heard the sound of the foghorn which is clearly depicted throughout the work.

- Program Note from publisher

The Padstow lifeboat has a long, heroic and distinguished record. The new lifeboat station is near Trevose lighthouse, whose foghorn varies in pitch between middle C and D. For the sake of musical unity it remains D throughout this march.

- Program Note by Malcolm Arnold


State Ratings



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Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Arnold, M. (1967). The Padstow Lifeboat: March: Op. 94 [score]. Henrees Music: London.
  • Sir Malcolm Arnold website
  • Smith, Norman E. (1986). March Music Notes. Lake Charles, La.: Program Note Press, pp. 19.