Mark started playing tenor trombone at the age of 11 having lessons from the Rotherham Music Service. He was asked to join the Rotherham Schools Band and eventually ended up on bass trombone as he was the only person able to read bass clef. At the age of 13 he was asked to join the Yorkshire Schools Band and also the Barnsley Chronicle Band. He successfully auditioned for the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain which gave him his first taste of big time brass banding when at the age of 16 he joined the Brighouse & Rastrick Band. Two years later Mark accepted the offer to join the Black Dyke Mills Band under David King. During his time at Dyke the band won the European Championships twice, undertook several tours including a very memorable trip to Sierra Leone!!
Mark began to study at Salford University with Neville Roberts (bass trombone Halle). After 12 months he transferred to the Royal Northern College of Music. He started working with the Halle during his first term at college and was also approached by Howard Snell to join the Britannia Building Society Band (now Fodens Richardson). Mark accepted and spent several years there winning the All England Masters Championship twice as well as bringing the Swiss Open Cup to the UK.
He was asked to join the Andy Prior Orchestra which saw him performing at the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool 6 nights a week for 6 months of the year! He is still the bass trombonist and has performed on all of Andy’s albums and tours since then.
Mark has performed with some of the countries finest orchestras including the Halle, BBC Scottish, Ulster and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. He has worked with the Syd Lawrence Orchestra and has done various sessions performing for radio and television, and been part of the orchestra for Miss Saigon, West Side Story and 42nd Street.
In April 2001 Mark was invited over to the USA to become the bass trombonist with the Brass Band of Battle Creek. He accepted after much careful thought (ed. – Hah!!)! This now sees him working alongside some of the most celebrated brass players in the world.
Mark also spends his time teaching and has been the bass trombone professor at Salford University for several years.
He was honoured to be asked to join Grimethorpe in 2003, just in time for the bands tour to the USA which ended with a superb performance at Carnegie Hall.