Piping world championships named `event of the year' 

Pipe Bands by Mervyn McConnell

THE World Pipe Band Championships has won the prestigious award for the `Event of the Year 2006' held by Scots Trad Music Award. The award was announced after more than 70,000 votes were cast online by traditional music fans from all around the world.

Chairman of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, Mr Kevin Reilly said: "This is the first time in 75 years the RSPBA has won such a prestigious award and I wish to thank the thousands of pipers and drummers from all over the world who helped to make the championships such a special event."

Some 236 bands descended on Glasgow Green bringing an estimated 8,000 pipers and drummers from as far away as Europe, Australia, Canada, USA and New Zealand to Glasgow. More than 40,000 people attended on the day.

Organised by the RSPBA the event recognises the very best of traditional Scottish music and culture.


Ian Embelton, the chief executive of the RSPBA, said: "We're celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Worlds and what better way to do it than with an award such as this. It is only right to pay tribute to all of the bands, the adjudicators and staff from the Council who work so hard to make this the premier event in the global piping calendar." Other winners on the evening included Kintyre School Pipe Band who were awarded the Scottish Pipe Band of the Year 2006.

The Annual General Meeting of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association will take place at the Quality Hotel, 99 Gordon Street Glasgow on Saturday March 10.

Hopefully a good attendance of representatives from Northern Ireland will be at this important meeting.

The Quinn Memorial Pipe Band from Killygullip Londonderry, who were absent last season from the competition arena, have now reformed under their Pipe Major Harry Bloomfield. The Quinn were one of the top contenders in Grade 3 and it is good to know that they will be hoping to compete once again in 2007.

Pipe Major Harry Bloomfield is pleased with the turnout of his pipers and drummers and will be working hard for the new competition season.

The main dates for the piping and drumming competitions to take place next year are as follows:

Saturday May 19 - The Scottish Championships at Levengrove Park, Dumbarton, Scotland.

Saturday June 23 - British Championships at Ballymena Northern Ireland.

Saturday July 7 - All Ireland Championships - Newcastle Northern Ireland.

Saturday July 28 - European Championships at Inverness Scotland.

Saturday August 11-The World Pipe band Championships at Glasgow Green Scotland. Saturday

August 25 - Cowal Championships at Dunoon Scotland.

Saturday October 27 - World Solo Drumming Championships. Venue still to be announced.


A memorial trust to honour the memory of the late piper Gordon Duncan has been launched.

The new trust will collect proceeds from various projects related to Gordon. His equally famous brother Ian Duncan is currently assembling a collection of his music.

Gordon died suddenly almost one year ago at the age of 43, leaving a legacy of brilliant recordings, acclaimed compositions, and legendary memories. Throughout his life he was committed to assisting young pipers and the money raised by the trust will go to organising teaching programmes for them.

Ulster Star