Contests are looked forward to very much by bandsmen, no matter what section they are in. One meets old friends and rivals. Penicuik was still in the first section as they entered the 1925 contest. Noel Thorpe was the conductor and they took fifth place. 1926 saw the deterioration of the Band in every way. Taylor resigned, some players were “past their best” due to old age, and others had left Penicuik to obtain work. It was difficult under these circumstances to secure the services of a professional teacher. The former principal cornet player of the band, Alex Rae, took over for a few years but it was a struggle. Eventually in 1927 the committee issued an appeal for funds to secure the services of a professional teacher.
The new teacher, from England, Israel Almond, worked hard but left after a year. George Purves who was still to the fore could not see his beloved band go down and he kept things going until the war years intervened.