MCS was informed that Robert had passed away on 6 November 2009.

His obituary in the Oxford Mail reads:

MUSICIAN Robert Stevens has died after a short illness, aged 55.

Mr Stevens, who lived with his family in Bicester, was one of the earliest to benefit from Oxfordshire County Music Service’s instrumental tuition in schools.

He studied trombone and composition at the Royal Northern College of Music where his playing won him the Hiles Gold Medal.

Mr Stevens performed countless concerts, classical and popular — both as an orchestral player and a solo performer — as the county’s premier trombonist, performing for more than 25 years with the City of Oxford Orchestra.

He also taught generations of brass instrumentalists, including more than 30 years as visiting brass teacher at Magdalen College School.

In 1998, Mr Stevens founded and managed the Mad Hatter Band and Agency (TMHB) in which he was bandleader, trombonist and singer.

He arranged more than 300 pieces for the agency, as well as composing his own works.

Mr Stevens died on November 6 and leaves wife Sarah and daughter Charlotte, 19. His funeral is being held at Oxford Crematorium on Wednesday at 2.15pm.