Big thank you from

Huge crowd for pipers at Bangor championships  

Pipe Bands by Mervyn McConnell

THE North Down Pipe Band and Drum Majors championships were held last Saturday at Bangor Castle Grounds.

It was a glorious day, which attracted the biggest crowd of holidaymakers and pipe band enthusiasts seen at these championships for many years.

This year there was the added attraction of solo piping contests, Highland Dancing events and children's entertainers.

What an amazing day it was for the pipers and drummers from Cullybackey Pipe Bands. Their senior band under Pipe Major Amos Gilmore won the Grade 2 title in both piping and drumming and their junior band under Pipe Major Alan Young took the Grade 4b title.

It was especially an exciting win for Pipe Major Amos Gilmore who has led the senior band from 1998 and this was the first time they had won the top prize in Grade 2 since he took over. It certainly proves that perseverance pays off. Amos is ably assisted by his Leading Tip Adrian Hoy who has led his drum corps to win many trophies including the world championships in Grade 2 in 2001.

Other names on the winning trophies were Ravara in Grade 1; Syerla in Grade 3A; Quinn Memorial in 3B and Seven Towers in 4A.

The Drum Corps of the R.U.C. have produced a unique book containing 40 drum scores- some of which they have won major titles with, which is sure to attract the interest of all drummers. This is sure to be a collector item as the book also contains the names of drummers and the history of one of the best drum corps ever to be formed in Ireland.

The drum corps of the RUC, now defunct, were the winners of the 2000 world Grade 1 championship title under Leading Tip Gary Corkin as well as winners of 17 other major ones.

The book will be launched on 7th August and will be available from leading music shops including the Belfast Music Supplies, the Essay on the Newtownards Road and the Music shops in Cookstown and Magherafelt.

All proceeds from the book will go to the RUC Widows Association.

There will also be an opportunity to purchase this outstanding collection of drum scores from the Andante Trade stand at this year's world pipe band championships in Glasgow.

A solo drumming competition will take place in the Catering College Coleraine Road Portrush on Friday, August 8 commencing at 1.30p, There will be 3 grades - under 16, under 14, and under 12. A piper is not necessary as you may use a tape or be unaccompanied. Entries will be accepted up to the day of the competition.

There will also be a Highland dance competition on the same date and at the same venue. Again entries will be accepted up to and on the day of the competition, and this will also start at 1.30pm

The RSPBA in conjunction with the Northern Ireland Piping Society will be promoting a knockout bagpipe solo competition on the Friday evening. Eight invited players will each be asked to play a March Strathspey and Reel in the first round of the competition. The players will be drawn in pairs to compete against each other with the successful competitor progressing to the next round.

Then the four remaining players will have to play a Jig and Hornpipe and again the two successful competitors will play each other in the final. This event will commence at 8.00pm with the draw taking place at 7.30pm

Adjudication will be by audience participation with selected spectators being asked to decide which player goes forward to the next round.

There will be free admission to these events.

On the Saturday, August 9 the North West Pipe band Championships will take place at Ramore Head Portrush commencing at 12 noon. At present there has been entries of 55 bands and 50 drum majors. There is also planned to hold a Highland Dance Workshop on August 9. Further details of this will be released at the Highland Dance competition on the Friday.

All these events are sponsored by Coleraine Borough Council.

Grade 1. 1st.Ravara (plus best drums and best bass and M&D) 2nd.Ballycoan. 3rd.Ballinderry Bridge.
Grade 2. 1st.Cullybackey (also best drums, best bass and M&D) 2nd.Ballinderry Bridge. 3rd.Upper Crossgare. 4th.Killeen
Grade 3A. 1st.Syerla. (also best drums and best bass). 2nd.Finvoy. 3rd.Woodgrange. 4th.F.Rainey. Ballydonaghy M&D.
Grade 3B. 1st.Quinn Memorial. 2nd.Bready (also best drums). 3rd.Hollvmount. 4th.Altnaveigh (also best bass)
Grade 4A. 1st.Seven Towers. (also best drums). 2nd.Marlacoo. 3rd.Annsborugh (also best bass). 4th. Gilnahirk (also M&D)
Grade 4B. 1st.Cullybackey Jun. (also best bass and M&D). 2nd.Manorcunningham. 3rd.Bready Jun (also best drums). 4th.Antrim.
Novice Juvenile. 1st.Linzi Hamilton. 2nd.Samantha Gordon. 3rd.Jonathan McKee. 4th.Natasha Cherry. 5th.Craig Clydesdale.
Junior. 1st.Ryan Ferry. 2nd.Elizabeth Sloan. 3rd.Laura J. Lawson. 4th.Joanne Wilson. 5th.Karl Love.
Juvenile. 1st.Donna Gillespie. 2nd.Danielle Sharvin. 3rd.lan Scott. 4th.Paul Spence. And Alicia Dickson.
 Senior. 1stAlastair Patterson. 2nd.Brian Wilson. 3rd.Cathy Megarry. 4th.Gloria Patterson. 5th.Kathv Chambers.

Ulster Star