Big thank you from

Lisburn pipe band contest to feature on BBC television 

Pipe Bands by Mervyn McConnell

THE European Pipe Band Championships, which took place in Lisburn on 31st July, were filmed by the BBC and will be shown in two programmes in September.

These will be presented by Mervyn Herron, National Council member and contest secretary for the Northern Ireland branch of the RSPBA, and will feature interviews with leading Pipe Majors, as well as showing all the winning bands and drum majors from the championships.

The dates to remembers are 20th and 27th September starting at 10.35pm on BBC television. The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association has confirmed the dates for the 2005 Major Pipe Band Championships.

They are as follows:

• Scottish Championships to be held in Dumbarton 21st May.

• European Championships to be held in Banbridge 25th June.

• British Championship to be held in Tain 30th July. • World Championship to be held in Glasgow 13th August.

• Cowal Championship to be held in Dunoon 27th August.

There will be more international adjudicators at future world pipe band competitions.

This was announced by Kevin Reilly at the RSPBA's International conference recently.

He said the new procedure would enable International Pipe Band Associations affiliated to the RSPBA to nominate suitably qualified and experienced adjudicators to be considered for membership of the RSPBA adjudicators' panel. Over 50 pipe bands from outside the UK competed at Glasgow Green in August 2004, which highlighted the depth of interest and commitment in pipe band music worldwide.

The RSPBA is very conscious of the tremendous effort these bands make to go to Glasgow and the significant cost of doing so and have decided it is only fair to all bands that consideration should also be given to involving the best adjudicators from other countries wherever possible.

The RSPBA is committed to the highest standards

of adjudication, and more rigorous acceptance criteria for the RSPBA has been introduced during the past year.

The adjudicator training programme has been expanded and arrangements for continuing professional development of adjudicators are being developed.

This new procedure for involving more international adjudicators should further enhance the whole process of adjudicating.

The entries for this year's All Ireland piping and drumming solo championship on 18th September promises to be one of the largest ever with 232 entries.

There are 21 competing in the pibroch, 14 in the senior piping, 15 in the under 14 juvenile and 16 in the under 16 juvenile piping. 13 are entered for the practise chanter, 8 for the novice piping, and there are two heats of 24 each in the junior piping.

There are 8 for the senior drumming, 10 for the intermediate, 35 for the junior, 14 in the under 14 juvenile, 8 in the under 16 juvenile, and 6 for the drum pad competition.

It's great to see so many young and up and coming pipers and drummers competing for this event.

Adjudicators will be Norman Dodds, Colin Moffett, Brian McMahon, M. Fitzgerald, Ian Wood and J. Young for piping and M. Neill, W. Goodall and Sandy Steele for drumming. Winston Pinkerton will adjudicate the novice piping.

As the entry is so large tuning rooms will be a premium and rooms will only be available to competitors and not to individual bands. Catering will be by the ladies committee.

A letter of congratulations has been received from an ardent band follower from Canada, Stanley McBride. Stanley faithfully follows the pipe band notes in the Star sent to him by his niece Gillian from Newtownbreda.

He writes: "Congratulations to the Field Marshal Montgomery on winning the world pipe band championships, and to acting Pipe Major Alistair Dunn and the rest of the band for doing so well when Richard was getting better. It was great to see him piping and leading the band again.

"A special well done to all the Irish bands that done so well. We still have some of the best bands in the world and congratulations to them all."

Ulster Star