WO1 (BM) E E Hayes (Freeborn)
WO1 Esther Hayes was born in Coventry and started her musical career learning the flute and piano. She went onto further her musical skills at Rugby Music College playing in small ensembles. After pursuing a double Music A Level at North Warwickshire College she started a music degree course at Wolverhampton University. Shortly after this, she had her first experience with the forces and joined the Volunteer Warwickshire Band of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.
After three years of service and completion of a music degree she applied for the Army Music bursary scheme and started Phase 1 Training at Winchester in 1998. After completing Phase 2 training at the Royal Military School of Music and she then went on to be posted to the Band of the Royal Corps of Signals, based in Blandford, Dorset.
After three years with the Royal Signals, WO1 Hayes gained entry onto the Bandmasters course at the Royal Military School of Music. In 2006, having completed three years of study she completed the course, achieving a music degree. Her first posting as a Bandmaster was the Band of The Parachute Regiment based in Colchester as the first Female Bandmaster. Here, she spent three busy, but enjoyable years, completing tours of Canada, Cyprus and Germany. It was during her time in Essex where she first met The Royal British Legion Band and Corps of Drums, Romford and now enjoys regularly instructing the band as one of their Musical Directors and assisting in preparation for concerts and contests.
In 2011, Esther became the first female bandmaster in the history of the Bands of the Household Cavalry, when she became the Bandmaster of the Band of the Life Guards. You can read about her appointment on www.gov.uk here