DESPITE the inclement weather 74 pipers and 20 drummers travelled to Ballymena last Saturday to compete in the Seven Towers Country Antrim Solo Championships.
The competition was the first solo event of 2006 and took place in Ballee High School.
The competition secretary, Patricia Pedlow, was delighted with not only the support of all sole pipers and drummers, but those who came along to encourage them.
The senior piping trophy went to last year's holder, Andrew Carlisle of the Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band, with the senior drumming championship being won by Neil Ussher from Ravara Pipe Band.
Cullybackey Pipe Band will hold their 19th annual Solos in Cullybackey High School on Saturday April 1.
The band, like so many other bands, realises the necessity and importance of encouraging young pipers and drummers. Recent years have seen a significant increase in the numbers entering at all juvenile levels. They believe that this has been as a result of the measures introduced to cater for young people at all levels.
The Young Achievers Awards, have been found to be extremely popular and as a result, both the Ulster and All Ireland Solos Committees have adopted them Cullybackey Pipe Band would like to thank everyone for their continued support and also encourage bands that have not entered anyone in the past, to use this forum to assist them in the development of their young pipers and drummers.
There will be sections for practise chanter, juvenile piping, junior, intermediate and senior piping, as well as drum pad, juvenile, junior intermediate and senior drumming.
The competition kicks off at 10.30am and entries close on Saturday March 25.
Entry forms are obtainable from Mr. J. Gribben, 52 Elmwood, Cullybackey, Ballymena, BT43 5PY telephone 25 881901.
The Annual General Meeting of the RSPBA will take place in Glasgow on Saturday March 11. The last of the Branch meetings before the start of the competition season, will be held in the Bridge Community Centre Lisburn on Saturday March 25, when all the news from the AGM will be discussed.
At the last branch meeting it was confirmed that a major pipe band championship event would take place in Lisburn possibly in June or July of 2008.
The decision on this matter had been referred back to the Edonomic Development Committee but Chairman George Ussher said that the RSPBA now had received the go ahead from the Lisburn City Council Committee for this event.
A date for the diary is September 23 2006 when an 80 piece Scottish Fiddle Orchestra has been booked to appear at the Ulster Hall.
Results of Seven Towers Solo Piping and Drumming
Practice chanter under 14 - 1 Dean Cinnamond (Gransha), 2 Scott Barr (Ravara), 3, Dale Fisher (Upper Crossgare), 4 Joshua Truesdale (Waringsford).
Practice Chanter 14-16 - 1 Matthew Kelso (Ballymena), 2 William Wallace (Waringsford).
Juvenile Piping under 14 - 1 Alan McPherson (Cullybackey), 2 Jamie Walker (Bleary & Dist), 3 Graham Harris (Bleary & District), 4 Alan Glenholmes (Cullybackey)
Juvenile Piping 14 to 16 - 1 lemma Redman (Cullybackey), 2 Jonathan Lamberton (Ballycoan), 3 Neil Milliken (Cleland Memorial), 4 Kylie Beavers (Wm. Kerr Memorial).
Juvenile Piping 16 to 18 - 1 Laura Jane Lawson (Ballycoan), 2 Philip Lewis (Wm.Kerr Memorial), 3 Sarah Gibson (Killeen).
Junior Piping - 1. Connor McCallion (Ballinderry Bridge), 2 Gareth Gardner (Scottish Power), 3 Alistair Murray (Ballycoan), 4 Philip Tasker (Ballycoan).
Intermediate Piping - 1 Kevin Rogers (St.Laurence O'Toole), 2 Ashley McMichael (Field Marshal Montgomery) 3 James Gibson (Bleary & District), 4 Andrew Shilliday (Wm. Kerr Memorial).
Senior Piping -1 Andrew Carlisle, 2 Jonathan Greenlees, 3 Glenn Cupples, 4 Amos Gilmore. All Field Marshal Montgomery
Open Jig - 1 Andrew Carlisle, 2 Jonathan Greenlees, 3 Peter Dorman (Ballinderry Bridge). 4 Glenn Cupples.
Drum Pad under 14 - 1 Renwick Sharp (Ballyboley), 2 Adam Morrow (Raffrey), 3 Cameron Sharp (Ballyboley), 4 Hannah Gibson (Raffrey). -
Drum Pad (14-16) - 1 Phillip Armstrong (Ballyboley).
Juvenile drumming under 14 - 1 Clarke Campbell (Bready Ulster-Scots).
Juvenile Drumming (14-16) - 1 Aaron McLean (Bleary & District), 2 Stephen Paynter (Killeen) 3 Clarke Campbell (Bready Ulster-Scots), 4 Calum Gibson (Moneygore).
Juvenile Drumming (16-18) 1 Richard Green (Cleland Memorial), 2 Aaron McLean (Bleary & District), 3 Mark Featherstone (Bleary & District).
Junior - 1 Robert Nutt (RSPBA), 2 William Glenholmes (Cullybackey).
Intermediate Drumming - won by Mark McFetridge (Scottish Power).