Special award for services to piping and drumming goes to John 

Pipe Bands by Mervyn McConnell

THE 57th Ulster Piping and drumming solos under the auspices of the RSPBA Northern Ireland Branch will take place at Monkstown Community School on Saturday 22nd April.

The solos have attracted a large entry with 76 pipers and 43 drummers taking part to claim the top prizes for solo piping and drumming in Ireland.

Pipers will start competing at 10 o'clock and drummers at 11 o'clock.

The adjudicators will be Ian Duncan, Tom Spears, Colin Moffett, David Brown Junior and Billy Barnham.

Recently the 2nd annual solo piping and drumming organised by the Competing Soloists Organisation was held in Monkstown Community School with again a large entry of pipers and drummers.

One feature of this event is the presentation of a CSO silver quaich to someone in recognition of their services to pipers and drummers. This year the award was given to John Rea, well known as a drummer tutor and adjudicator.

Results of the CSO solos

Class B Piobaireachd.

1st Calum McKimmon. 2nd Jamie Walker. 3rd Laura McWhirter.

Open Piobairachd.

1st Andrew Carlisle. 2nd Jonathan Greenlees. 3rd Michael Egan. Novice Chanter, 1st John O'Donnell. 2nd Scott Barr. 3rd Joshua Truesdale.

Advanced Chanter.

1st Matthew Kelso. 2nd Hannah Maxwell. 3rd Alison Sharp. 
Juvenile Piping section One. 1st Alan MacPherson. 2nd Bradley Parker. 3rd Emmett Conway.

Juvenile Piping section two.

1st Jemma Redmond. 2nd David Stone. 3rd Laura Jane Lawson.

Junior Piping.

1st Kris Coyle. 2nd Conor McCallion. 3rd Stuart Irvine. Intermediate. Piping. 1st Andrew Shilliday. 2nd James Gibson. 3rd Alan McFarland.

Senior Piping MSR.

1st Andrew Carlisle. 2nd Jonathan Greenlees. 3rd Andrew Hall. Senior Hornpipe and Jig. 1st Andrew Carlisle. 2nd Andrew Hall. 3rd Jonathan Greenlees.


1st Andrew Carlisle. 2nd Jonathan Greenlees. 3rd Andrew Hall.

Novice Drum Pad.

1st Gareth McCombe. 2nd Andrew Thompson. 3rd Renwick Sharp.

Advanced Drum Pad.

1st Kyle Black. Juvenile Drumming. 1st Stephen Paynter. 2nd Clarke Campbell. 3rd Ian McCombe. Junior Drumming. 1st Nigel Anderson. 2nd John Stewart. 3rd .Matthew Ring. Intermediate Drumming. 1st Mark McFedridge.
Senior Drumming OVERALL CHAMPION. 1st Philip Bell. 2nd John Henderson. 3rd Gavin Noade.

The 40th Annual Saintfield contest including the Full bands will take place on Saturday 29th April in Saintfield High School starting at 12 noon sharp.

The Saintfield competition is the longest running indoor contest in Ireland. With last year being such a huge success, the secretary Jonathan McCaughtry from

Saintfield Pipe band is hoping for another successful contest this year. Entries closed on Saturday 15th April but late entries will be accepted. Contact Jonathan on 97 528098.

The Grade 1 Strathclyde Police Pipe band will travel to the All Ireland Championships scheduled for 1st July in Letterkenny.

Pipe Major Donald MacKay has said the band are looking forward to competing in Ireland and the contest will help them prepare for the World Pipe band Championships as well.

Strathclyde Police gave a recent concert performance in Stirling where they used multimedia audio and visual technology on stage. Pipe Major MacKay said that although the band is a not really that well known for being a concert band, using this new technique will certainly raise their game and they hope to not only be successful at major pipe band championships but on the concert stage as well.

Several men from Northern Ireland play in the band. Eric Ward, originally from Co. Down, is their Leading Tip, Don Bradford originally from Co. Tyrone and Brendan Murphy who still lives in Co. Armagh.

The Grade 1 All Ireland Championships has been won 16 times in the last 17 years by Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band. The only band to take their crown was Scottish Power who won the grade in 2000.

Ulster Star