The annual exhibition of plants, flowers, fruits, and vegetables, was held in the Park adjoining the Moira Baths, at Moira. The show was extensive and superior in character. No less than fifteen marquees were occupied for different purposes connected with it; whilst three more were appropriated for refreshments. The tents were supplied by Mr. Hobson, of Derby; and the creature comforts by Messrs. Goodman and Smith, and Mr. Love, of the Queen's Head, Ashby-de-la-Zouch. The sum of 200 guineas was given away in the shape of prizes in the floral and horticultural department of the fete; and £35 were given in various sums to the successful competitors In the brass band contest, which formed an interesting and popular feature in the programme. The Midland and the North Staffordshire Companies ran special trains from places near and remote, and about 10,000 persons were conveyed to the scene of the day's proceedings.
Prince Albert's Own Leicestershire Yeomanry Cavalry Band (by permission of Colonel the Right Hon, the Earl Howe) was engaged for the occasion, and directed by Mr. Nicholson, the bandmaster. The members of this band played with great spirit and skill the following selection of music:
Wedding March - Mendelssohn. . Valse, "Garendon" - Mrs. A. De Lisle. Overture, "Zauberflote" - Mozart. Grand Selection, "Robert le Diable" - Meyerbeer. Polka, "Eclipse" - Koenig (Cornet Obligato, Mr. W. Seal.) Grand March, composed for the opening of the International Exhibition, 1862 - Auber. Galop, "Early Morn - J. P. Clarke Overture, "Bohemian Girl" - Balfe. Operatic Selection. "Un Ballo in Maschera" - Verdi. Quintett, "Blow Gentle Gales" - Bishop &c., &c., &c.
For the contest the following bands were entered, and performed the pieces specified:
1. Midland Amateur Band, Leicester - Selection, "La Figlia del Reggimento" Exhibition March - Auber. 2. Matlock Volunteer Rifle Band - "Guglielmo Tell", "Lucrezia Borgia" 3. Bow Bridge Brass Band, Leicester - Selection. "Lurline" - Wallace, Overture, "Nabuco" - Verdi. 4. Wednesbury Rifle Band - Selection, "Nabuco" - Verdi, Selection, "Lurline" - Wallace. 5. Globe Tube Works Band, Wednesbury - Selection, "Lucrezia Borgia." Selection. "Il Trovatore" 6. Gresley and Swadlincote Garibaldi Brass Band - "Fill the Shining Goblet" Selection, "Lucrezia. Borgia." 7. The Leicester Temperance Brass Band - Selection, "Norma" - Bellini. Overture, "Bohemian Girl" - Balfe. 8. Railway Ironworks and Victoria Foundry Brass Band, Derby - Selection, 12th Mass, "Gloria" - Mozart. Selection, Opera, "Attila" - Verdi. 9, Loughborough Rifle Corps Band - Chorus, "The Heavens are Telling." Overture, "The Bohemian Girl" - Balfe.
The Judges - Mr. Henry Farmer, of Nottingham; and Mr. W. W. Woodward, of Derby - were shut up in a tent adjoining the platform during the performance, as is usual in such cases, in order to secure a decision which might be relied upon as founded strictly on the merits of the bands.
The prizes were awarded as follows: 1st prize (£12, Matlock Volunteer Rifle Band; 2nd (£10), Wednesbury Rifle Band; 3rd (£6), Bow Bridge Brass Band, Leicester; 4th, (£3), Loughborough Rifle Corps Band; 5th (£2), Leicester Temperance Brass Band; extra prize (£2), Midland Amateur Band, Leicester.
The whole of the bands joined in playing some popular Anthems, &c., at the beginning and finish of the contest.