Layton Hodgetts

The day the music died: farewell Layton Hodgetts

FAMILY, friends and the wider community are today mourning the passing of Layton Hodgetts after a long struggle with cancer.

A true leader in our community, Layton was known far and wide as the founding father of the Derwent Valley Concert Band, and closer to home he will be remembered as a friend and teacher to many, and a key figure in New Norfolk’s history.

Derwent Valley Council deputy mayor Jessica Cosgrove said the region had lost an iconic and inspired member of the community who had touched the lives of a significant number of people. “I greatly admired Layton’s passion for music, knowledge and kindness to all,” Cr Cosgrove said.

Former Derwent Valley Concert Band secretary Antony Cave said Layton’s passion for music had been heard by thousands. “You built a community, inspired us, touched our hearts and we will never, never forget,” Mr Cave said.

Condolences have been offered by the Federal Member for Lyons, Brian Mitchell, to Layton’s wide circle of friends, family and colleagues. “He lived and breathed community spirit, a gentleman in every way. A big loss for the Valley,” Mr Mitchell said.

Fellow music teacher and lead singer of the Giant Hamsters, David Minchin, said he had replaced Layton at Warrane High School when he transferred to New Norfolk High. “He was indeed a dedicated and talented teacher and musician. More than that he was an absolutely respected and admired gentleman by all who knew him. A more humble genuine person you’d never meet,” Mr Minchin said.

Former Hobart lord mayor Rob Valentine said Layton would be remembered as “the true gentleman he truly was, giving so much to the community over his many years of involvement in things musical. May he indeed rest in peace, and many condolences to his family,” Mr Valentine said.

Picture: Derwent Valley Concert Band


  1. I had the pleasure to meet and work with Layton several times and found him to be absolutely amazing. Such a gentleman, amazingly charismatic but also passionate, kind and caring. It was wonderful to have a conversation with him about anything, he brought such happiness to the world. Vale Layton, and thank you for everything you did.

  2. Such a sad sad day. I was so glad to have been able to have visited him for his farewell party. He will be missed by the whole of Tasmania, especially those who benefited so much from his musical direction and assistance. A great man that will be remembered by all. Thank you Layton, Rest In Peace now.

  3. Vale Layton, may you rest in the arms of the Lord you loved and who gifted you with wonderful talent and energy. Rest In Peace

  4. He was always Mr Hodgetts to me, at New Norfolk High School. His commitment to music was unsurpassed. A great man, a great gentleman, sadly missed.

  5. Layton was such a solid musican, and so good natured at all times to rehearse with, he made those times fun. I first met him when doing my teacher training in the early 80s, in Edward Talbot’s choir, another admirer of Layton’s skill and good humour. With much pleasure, late in our teaching careers we became colleague teachers in 2016-2017 at Oakwood, where Layton was a treasured member of the school community, statewide. Always a true professional to work with.

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