THIS year's Co. Antrim pipe band championships were held, for the second year, in the award-winning village of Broughshane.
Chieftain of the Day James McNeill said: "Broughshane is a village where the community connects, embracing and welcoming people to participate and enjoy events such as these championships. The wonderful spectacle of the massed Pipe Bands and the Parade of the Village is a highlight for the whole community."
Chairman of the Co. Antrim section of the RSPBA, Winston Pinkerton welcomed all bands people and t h a n k e d t h e Broughshane and District Community Association for all their hard work and support for this event.
Ballycoan with Pipe Major Alfie Rea made a clean sweep of the prizes in Grade 1, winning best pipes, best drums and best bass and claiming the overall first place title.
Ravara with Pipe Major Sammy Connolly repeated these results in Grade 2 when they won every title plus the trophy for marching and deportment. Their drum major Ian Young also carried off the senior title in his grade.
Ballydonaghy Pipe Band made a strong challenge for Grade 3B but just missed out on winning first place. They took runner up place on piping preference over Cottown who won best drums. Battlehill claimed the first place win in 3B.
Other winners were Seven Towers in Grade 3A winning best pipes and best drums, Aughintober who won 4A and the drumming trophy and Dr. Wright Memorial who secured 4B and the best pipe corps award.
Next Saturday, June 11, it is the turn of the Mid Ulster section to stage their championships. These will commence at 12 o'clock in Cookstown when 43 bands will compete for top places.
Novice Juvenile Drum Majors: 1. Dale Fisher, 2. Kiera Wilson, 3. Lauren Abraham, 4. Lauren Muldrew.
Junior: 1. Samantha Gordon, 2. Sharon Martin, 3. Caroline Clydesdale, 4. Simon Kerr, 5. Linzi Hamilton, 6. David Gordon.
Juvenile: 1. Donna Gillespie, 2. Ryan Ferry, 3. Alicia Dickson, 4. Emma Chambers, 5. Jemma Clydesdale.
Senior: 1. Ian Young, 2. Kathy Megarry, 3. Brian Wilson, 4. David Brownlee, 5. Paula Braiden.
Grade 4B: 1. Dr. Wright Memorial (also best pipes), 2. Antrim (also best drums and best bass), 3. Drumlough, 4. Cullybackey (Also M&D).
G r a d e 4A : 1 . Aughintober (also best drums and best bass), 2. Sgt Walker (also best pipes), 3. Queen E l i z a b e t h , 4 . McNeillstown.
Grade 3B: 1. Battlehill (also best pipes and best bass and M&D), 2. Ballydonaghy, 3. Cottown (Also best drums).
Grade 3A: 1. Seven Towers (also best pipes and best drums), 2. Marlacoo (also M&D), 3. Banbridge (also best bass), 4. Tamlaghy O'Crilly.
Grade 2: 1. Ravara (also best pipes, best drums, best bass and M&D), 2. Howard, 3. Cullvbackey, 4. Finvoy .
Grade 1: 1. Ballycoan (also best pipes, best drums and best bass), 2. Ballinderry (also M&D).
Solo Competition: Under 14 years: 1. Emmet Conway (Ballinderry Bridge), 2. Jamie Walker (Cleland Memorial), 3. lemma Redmond (Cullybackey).
17 years and under: 1. Laura J. Lawson (Eden), 2. Sarah Gibson (Moneygore), 3. Jonathan Lamberton (Monkstown).
The Co. Down section of the Royal Scottish Pipe band Association have joined forces with the National Trust to promote a major piping and family festival at the prestigious Castle Ward Estate on the shores of Strangford Lough.
The festival of piping will be held on Saturday, June 18 in the beautiful setting of the National Trust's stunning property, which will bring a new dimension in this major pipe band event.
A full programme of entertainment is planned with up to sixty bands, fifty drum majors, traditional music, and children's activities, including the peak discovery climbing tower and horse drawn carriage rides around the stunning estate.
Mervyn Herron, the contest organiser, is delighted with the wonderful venue and the fabulous array of pipe bands that will be making their way to Castle Ward in June.
"The Festival will be an electric mix of music and dance, which will delight audiences of all ages. We're delighted to announce the guest appearance of the famous Edinburgh Tattoo Highland Dancers, with their colourful and exciting performances of traditional Scottish dance, blended with a modern approach," he said.
"Also joining us will be the New Zealand Police Pipe Band, St. Laurence O'Toole, Field Marshal Montgomery -current world champions- the Brennan Miskelly Irish Dancers and Rathfriland Young Drums, to name but a few."
The event promises to be a great day out for all the family, with a host of attractions to bring a real carnival atmosphere to the occasion.
Pay a visit to the Farm Yard Craft Fair where there will be demonstrations and stalls filled with unique and fanciful crafts, and everyone will be able to enjoy music by `On The Latch' and 'The Molly Malone Ballad Company'.
There will be a vintage car rally, horse and carriage rides and fun packed activities for all the family. The event takes place from 11am to 6.00pm on Saturday, June 18 with an admission fee of £5 for adults with children free. For further information please contact Castle Ward on 028 4488 1204.