John Corbishley

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John Corbishley - Commanding Officer from Manchester Regiment

Who am I?

Hello, I am John Corbishley, from Oldham where I’ve lived all my life and supported Oldham Athletic FC all that time.  I have been in Brigade since our Company St Marks’ Heyside started in 1968 and I am the last founder member still active with the company.  My wife, Sue is now CO, both our sons are leaders and our eldest Grandson is a Martin member.   Our daughter “emigrated” to Yorkshire 15 years ago and never came back. 

What I bring to the Brigade?

I am still active on a number of levels and thankfully early retirement allows me to follow my passion for all things Brigade.  I suppose band is my forte, starting as a drummer, then Bass drummer and now a euphonium player where I do most of the arranging for the Military band that we now have.  I love camping and walking so D of E is just up my street (or Mountain).  I’m an instructor, expedition assessor and currently have 20 members registered on D of E.  I still do 3 nights a week plus all the admin required. 

I am CO of the Manchester Regiment, my day job, with 18 Companies to manage and support, which includes about 500 members and 120 staff. I help to organise the annual Camp to Aberfoyle in Scotland and have been a staff member for the last 5 years.   I am involved on the training side of Brigade within the Regiment as well as being the Chair of the FTOG group.  That’s the Formation Training Officers group where we help the Brigade Nationally to co-ordinate training as well as helping to develop the new on-line BVQ awards. I also help out with the Sports at Battalion, Regimental and National level as required.  My abilities behind the keyboard (Computer not instrument) mean I can do a lot on the admin, paperwork or organisation front to help my working colleagues.

In my previous working life, I was an Electrical Engineer with the Old Electricity Board and then progressing into Telecoms with a National Team of 75 Installation and maintenance engineers and technicians working for me.  It helped but was far easier than managing in the Brigade!!!  I have now been a member of Brigade Council for about 5 years and believe that we have been given a new lease of life with the work that has been done over the last 18 months, a chance to start a meaningful re-development of the Brigade and add even more security for our future.

What brought me to the Brigade?

At the age of 13 when our Company was about to start, the Rochdale Battalion band, and others members, gave us a display of what Brigade was about and I was hooked.  My dad was one of the early helpers, he only stayed for 35 years.  I met my wife Sue somewhere between Brigade and the Youth Club at our Church hall and all three of our Children and now our first (of 4) grandchildren has joined.

What do I enjoy about the Brigade?

Everything, and that for me is our main attraction.  Whatever you want to do in your spare time you can do with Brigade.  I enjoy the company of Young people.  Whether it’s the Band working with learners or trying to keep our National Band members suitably occupied or preparing for Concerts, parades, or Competition.  Climbing each week, running our Senior Corps night, (must have another sponsored silence some time!) or out on expedition training camps or just being there for them it is a unique and very privileged position to work with such a great bunch of Children and Young people.  That’s not just our own groups, whenever and wherever we meet, the Brigade family is consistent in it desire to have Fun, share Faith and enjoy each others Fellowship and that was nowhere more obvious than on the recent Interfaith weekend with our own leaders and the JLGB.  Incidentally, when you take away the religious bit we were remarkably similar!   I must clarify, we shared each others faith for the weekend and it was great and very enlightening.

Something interesting about me in 10 (12) words?

In my head I am still 25 and Brigade keeps me there.