Great Laxey Brass Band Festival Going Ahead – Make the most of a dry afternoon!

This morning’s forecast is for the rain to clear by mid-day so we are expecting to get The Great Laxey Brass Band Festival underway at 1.00pm in all three venues in the Upper Village (the Mines Tavern, The Glen Pavilion, and The Miner’s Statue).
Should the rain linger a little the event will still commence at 1.00pm using inside venues at The Laxey WMI, The Glen Pavilion, and Christ Church (beside the Tram Station). The event will then ‘venture-out’ as the weather improves.
Marshals will be circulating the Village to pass on information about any changes.
We’ll be in touch with Ronaldsway at 11.00am and make an announcement; as they will be able to predict much more accurately then. The announcement will be made on FB Sites ‘Visit Laxey, Visit Garff’, Garff Commissioners’, Laxey Central, & on Garff Commissioners Twitter page.
The situation may be a dynamic one but we and the wonderful bands will react to any situation and make sure the Show Goes On!
If it is wet Cookies and Candy, the Children’s Entertainer will give shows downstairs in the Laxey Working Men’s Institute at 2.00pm and 3.00pm; if dry the shows will be in the Tram Station as planned.
At this stage, however, we should have the dry weather in before 1.00pm. Cross those fingers now!
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The Great Laxey Brass Band Festival from 1.00pm Sunday 1st May 2022

The Great Laxey Brass Band Festival is back for 2022 on Sunday May 1st! Slap bang in the middle of the Bank Holiday weekend! And all taking place in the great outdoors – in and amongst Laxey’s fine cafes and pubs.
Have a pint, a meal, and a wander whilst experiencing the thrills (and spills!), the drama, and the spectacle of Brass Band Music being played loud and free across the upper Village.
Between 1.00 and 5.00 pm, six bands (Ramsey Town Band, Douglas Town Band, Castletown Metropolitan, Manx Concert Brass, Rushen Silver Band, & Onchan Silver Band) will be playing in rotation in three locations (The Mines Tavern, Glen Gardens Pavilion, and the Miner’s Statue) All followed by a big blast off in the Village Square from 4.00 pm when all five bands take to the stage!.
The ‘Jazz Aces’ will also be entertaining in the Village Square from 1.00 pm.
Why not make a day of it! A Pint in the Mines or at one of our other hostelries, food at one of Laxey’s great great cafe’s, and all topped off with an early evening stroll on our golden sands down at the Beach!
Another Great Day Out in Laxey! Don’t miss it!
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Contact the Commissioners to find out Progress with Options for Treatment of Laxey & Lonan’s Sewage

Please note that Members of the Public who wish to discuss the progress – and latest updates – from Manx Utilities can visit the office on 35 New Road, Laxey at any time and be briefed directly by the Commissioners’ Staff: please make an appointment by email or by calling 861241/422148.

A further post detailing the progress appears just below.

The Commissioners are keen to pass on comments and views from the public to Manx Utilities Project Team.

Alternatively email the Commissioners on with questions, comments, and views.

14.03.22: The Latest Update from Manx Utilities following a Meeting with the Commissioners on February 23rd 2022.

At a meeting between Manx Utilities and the Commissioners on 23rd February an update on progress was provided and the organisation has issued a statement which confirmed much of the discussion that took place (please see details set out below). The Chair of Manx Utilities, Mr Rob Callister MHK, the Executive Director, and the Head of Sewerage were present to represent the organisation.

In addition to the statements made below the Commissioners have been advised by Manx Utilities that:

  1. Land has been acquired in the vicinity of Garwick Glen. Any of this land that is not required for pumping stations or sewage treatment installations, etc is likely to be sold following completion of works.
  2. The purchase of further land in another area is being negotiated (MU advise that they cannot announce the location of this land at the landowner’s request).
  3. Manx Utilities are considering several options including an option to ‘pump away’ from Laxey/Lonan to Meary Veg in Santon. They are also considering pumping to an (as yet unknown) site in Lonan from both the Cairns site (Lowest point of the Laxey sewage system) in Laxey and from the lowest point of the Lonan system at Garwick (see their statement below titled “’Garff’). Details and costings of other options will also be brought forward.
  4. Manx Utilities advise that it is DEFA who set the standards for emissions into the sea which they must meet. DEFA issue the licence and they advise that the sewage treatment undertaken “must reduce the particles of e-coli in a sample by a factor of a million”: this means that if there are 2 million particles prior to treatment to meet the standard there must only be 2 particles in the ‘treated’ sample.
  5. There are other ‘contaminants’ than e-coli that may be in the water and the Commissioners will be approaching DEFA for clarification of these and a range of matters.
  6. DEFA advise that a portion of e-coli in the Laxey & Lonan systems (which are combined sewage and storm water) is likely to contain animal waste run-off from the fields and hills. They also advise, however, that should the need arise, DNA testing can identify whether the source is human or animal; once this is established the source of any breach of their regulations can be focussed upon and directed action taken.
  7. MU advise that the ‘pump away’ option will require Tynwald to approve a change to the current Regional Treatment Sewage Treatment Policy and any changes to the budget requirements.
  8. MU have confirmed that public consultation and public meetings will take place one they publish the five options they are preparing.



Statements fromManx Utilities made in recent press releases and published on their website:


  • The project teams are on course to make recommendations to the MU Board by Friday 25th March 2022. Whole Life Costing exercises are being finalised and the conclusions of the studies compiled to determine the best way forward for both areas on a combined cost and quality basis.


  • The final phase of the sewage treatment strategy for the Island is focused on delivering first time sewage treatment for Laxey, Baldrine and Peel.  Options are being fully assessed for local treatment works’ locations as well as pump away solutions to establish a positive outcome as soon as possible.


  • A rigorous ‘coarse screening’ process has been completed scoring over 40 potential sites against criteria comprising:
  1. Adequate space
  2. Zoning/land use
  3. Proximity to residential areas
  4. Access
  5. Conservation/high landscape or coastal value and scenic significance
  6. Elevation/topography
  7. Ecological barriers
  • For each area the coarse screening exercise has led to the selection of a small number of options which are now being looked at in more detail in order to determine the preferred solution to take forward. A concept design (comprising site layout and pipeline routes) for each option has been created and a desktop environmental review has been completed (including carbon footprint calculations) to allow a further ‘fine screening’ assessment to be undertaken which adds a further level of rigour where the following criteria are being assessed in greater detail:
  1. Land use/zoning
  2. Future growth capacity
  3. Proximity to residential areas
  4. Environmental impact
  5. Carbon cost
  6. Access
  7. Complexity & deliverability
  8. Community opportunity & benefit
  • Each of the shortlisted sites and pump away solutions are being scored against the above and are then being costed with the ‘whole life costs’ developed over periods of 25 and 50 years.
  • The cost and quality scores will be combined on a 70:30 quality: cost ratio (also undergoing a sensitivity check at 50:50) to ensure the best solution is chosen, not necessarily the cheapest.
    This is one of the most comprehensive reviews of sites and solutions that Manx Utilities have undertaken and each site has to be considered individually and in some cases in combination.
  • This is subject to positive land owner engagement.  Once the preferred options have been agreed we will be able to confirm the delivery programme. We remain on course for completion of all works by the end of 2024.
  • Water Quality
  • The bathing water quality standards required for any solution proposed are defined by Tynwald and will be in accordance with parameters set by DEFA.  Manx Utilities are designing to achieve the ‘Good’ standard of the 2006 EU Bathing Water Directive as required by the Isle of Man’s Water Pollution (Bathing Water Standards and Objectives) Scheme 2021.
  • We are also investigating what may be required should this be changed to the ‘Excellent’ element of the standard in the future; this will ensure that there is nothing within the design that prohibits any enhancement required in the future should the local Commissioners decide that Blue Flag beach status is an aspiration they would like to work towards.
  • Blue flag status requires ‘Excellent’ bathing water quality along with the adoption of over 30 other environmental and hygiene/facility factors including control of dogs, provision of lifeguards and many other aspects which would need consideration by local Commissioners.  Water quality is only covered in four of the ‘blue flag’ criteria.  Further details can be found here:
  • The discharge of any flows into rivers is controlled by DEFA whom determine acceptability and appropriate parameters.
  • National Importance, Long Term View and Costing
  • Resolving the sewage treatment issue in the remaining catchments of Garff and Peel is a matter of national importance.  Manx Utilities has sought assistance from professional consulting engineers with a robust and extensive international reputation who are also very familiar with the Isle of Man, the existing sewerage infrastructure and the operation of local and central government.
  • Whole-life-cost Net Present Value or ‘NPV’ calculations over 25-year and 50-year periods have been developed.  These are pragmatic assessment periods that take into account the best estimates for the civil, mechanical and electrical engineering capital and operating expenditure for the solutions proposed.
  • Sewage pumping costs will be included in the NPV calculations for all options short-listed to ensure these are adequately assessed.  Cost sensitivity analysis is also forming part of these calculations to determine if any selection ranking is influenced by construction cost or power cost rises – as seen recently.
  • Electricity consumption for all solutions is based on all supplies being taken from future national infrastructure, ensuring it does not assume benefits which are unrealistic.
  • The impact of tankering sludge is being taken into full consideration in the selection process.
  • Designs will be based on the current and predicted Population Equivalent (PE) values for 2021 and 2050.  These values take into account current population and an assessment based on published regional plans to predict future demands.  Future expansion beyond the 2050 PE value will also be considered.


  • Five preferred options for local treatment are now under consideration with concept designs complete. This includes options for a combined works located between Laxey and Baldrine
  • Discussions with landowners have commenced to help determine the viability of each option
  • The pump to Meary Veg option is being reviewed with various pipeline routes being considered
  • The need for extension, replacement or relocation of the outfall pipes at Laxey and Baldrine for all solutions are being reviewed
  • Options for short term improvement have been investigated but none identified as offering significant benefit
  • Issues identified with the failed planning application for a works in Laxey will be considered prior to any further application being made for any site
  • Further public consultation will be undertaken prior to any planning applications being submitted




Laxey is inviting the local community to come along and celebrate the festive season in the village this Christmas.

A number of special events are planned including the return of the popular Laxey Village Christmas Markets, which are taking place this weekend, Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th November, between 10am and 4pm.

Spread across the village, stalls selling a range of wonderful gifts and tasty treats from local suppliers will be set up at The Laxey Glen, Christ Church, The Laxey Working Men’s Institute and tram station. Festive treats will be available under the tent by the glen and little ones will have the opportunity to meet Father Christmas at the Working Men’s Institute too.

Great Laxey Mine Railway will also be running its Christmas trains between 11am and 4pm on both days, and there will be a craft fair at Cooil Roi Sheltered Housing Complex, Glen Road, on Saturday.

From Friday 3rd December until Tuesday 3rd January, Garff Commissioners, supported by Christ Church Laxey, is also excited to welcome back the 2021 Christmas Tree Parade following the success of the 2020 event. A wonderful array of festive trees decorated by local businesses and community groups will be on display in the church, which will be open for all to enjoy.

There will be a memorial Christmas tree to remember those no longer here, with visitors able to attach a message in memory of a loved one. There will also be an interactive puzzle tree provided by Exit Strategy with the opportunity to win a voucher for afternoon tea.

Martin Royle, deputy clerk of Garff Commissioners, said: ‘We are inviting people of all ages to come and enjoy the festivities in Laxey this Christmas. We have some lovely events planned and the Christmas Tree Parade in particular is set to be a great spectacle – great for families!

‘While in Laxey why not make a day of it and get some Christmas shopping done at some of our lovely shops such as Laxey Woollen Mills, Mother T’s and JJ Ribbons. There’s plenty of tasty eateries like The Shed, The Laxey Glen and Laxey Kitchen for when you get peckish too! We can’t wait to welcome faces old and new to the village this Christmas.’

Thinking of standing in Garff in the forthcoming Local Authority General Election?

Thinking of standing in Garff in the forthcoming Local Authority General Election?  We have nine seats to fill, three each in the Wards of Laxey, Lonan, and Maughold. You can find out more about the roles and responsibilities of a Commissioner in the link to the government document below…better still why not pop in to the Commissioners’ Office at 35 New Road in Laxey and speak to Martin or Pete about what you’d be involved with as a Commissioner. We can also arrange for a meeting with a current Commissioner so that you can really get the full picture.
As a Commissioner you’ll be involved in shaping the future of your community, making sure your community gets the right services, representing the views of local people.
You’ll be involved in engaging with, supporting, and leading your community: it’s a special role, one that involves making often difficult decisions, reviewing local authority and government policy, and bringing forward projects for new public facilities.
If you want to find out more and discuss the role in more detail contact the Commissioners on 861241 or via Martin or Pete will give you lots of information and can arrange for you to speak to a current Commissioner to give you the full picture of what the role entails.

The Great Laxey Brass Band Festival 2021 – A Great Afternoon Out, Don’t Miss it!


Experience the thrills, drama and spectacle of Brass Band Music being played loud and free in the outdoors on Sunday May 30th!
Come down Laxey to hear beautiful, stirring sounds echoing and reverberating around the village throughout the afternoon.
Between 1.00 and 5.00 pm, five bands (Ramsey Town Band, Douglas Town Band, Castletown Metropolitan, Manx Concert Brass, & Onchan Silver Band) will be playing in rotation in three locations (The Mines Tavern, Glen Gardens Pavilion, and the Miner’s Statue) All followed by a big blast off in the Village Square from 4.00 pm when all five bands take to the stage!.
The Jazz Aces will also be entertaining in the Village Square from 1.00 pm Another Great Day Out in Laxey!