Gary and Phillip take the top solo titles 

Pipe Bands by Mervyn McConnell

THE 57th Ulster Solo Piping a n d Drumming Championships were held last Saturday at Monkstown Community School under the auspices of the Northern Ireland branch of the RSPBA.

The winner of the 2006 overall solo senior piping was Gary Waterson from Bleary Pipe Band, and for the second year in succession Philip Bell carried off the title for senior drumming champion. Philip drums with Grade 1 Field Marshal Montgomery.

Adjudicators were Ian Duncan, Tom Speers Colin Moffett David Brown and Billy Barham. The awards were presented by Alderman William De-Courcy Mayor of Newtownabbey.

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

The Saintfield competition is the longest running indoor contest in Ireland.

Saturday May 6 is the date for the Co. Down section's Full Indoors bands competition. The adjudicators will be Trevor Dear, Jim Semple, Linden Ingram and William Goodall.

2006 sees the introduction of a brand new event to be held al the Malahide Festival of Piping and Drumming. The Malahide Drum Fanfare competition is the first of its kind in Ireland and will take place on Saturday May 13 along with the main Pipe Band championships.

Prize money for this new event will be 1st. - trophy and 400 Euros. 2nd. - trophy and 300 Euros. 3rd. - trophy and 200 Euros

The requirements are as follows: It must be original and unique to the drum corps playing it and should last 4 - 6 minutes. Points will be awarded for entertainment, imagination, technical ability and musicality.

For further information contact Robin Adams by emailing or calling 08774 31293.

The Historical Research Group is researching, for display in RSPBA Headquarters, the history of Pipe Bands and Pipe band drumming from the formation of the Association. The group is particularly interested in the years from 1930 to 1945.

They would like to hear from anyone who has photographs, newspaper cuttings, memorabilia or any interesting recollections. It is hoped to have the first part of the display in place before August 2006.

Funds are also being sought to assist in the purchase of display stands and fitments. A list of donors will form part of the display and will be published in The Pipe band magazine. Contact Alistair Aitken on 01506 882983 or Tony Harris 01525 875060.

It is with regret that we record the sudden death of John Crozier. John was Chairman of the Northern Ireland Branch of the RSPBA for many years, and up to his death was Chairman of the Ulster-Scots Dance Alliance and Gilnahirk Pipe band. He was a well-known figure both in Northern Ireland and Scotland and the sympathy of all in the pipe band world is extended to his wife and family.

Results of the Ulster Solo Piping and Drumming Championships:

Piobaireachd (B) -

1st. Laura McWhirter. 2nd. Emmet Conway. 3rd. Grahame Harris.

Piobaireachd (A) -

1st. Andrew Carlisle. 2nd. Alan Ferguson. 3rd. Peter Donnan.

Practice Chanter -

1st. John O'Donnell. 2nd. Allison Sharpe. 3rd. Dean Cinnamond.

Advanced Chanter -

1st. Matthew Kelso. 2nd. Hanna Maxwell. 3rd. William Wallace.

Juvenile Piping under 14 -

1st. Bradley Parker. 2nd. Alan MacPherson. 3rd. Ross Hume.

Juvenile Piping 14 under 16 -

lst. Jemma Redmond. 2nd. Neil Milliken. 3rd. Laura J.Lawson.

Junior Piping -

1st. Connor McCallion. 2nd. Claire Gibson 3rd. Cris Coyle.

Intermediate Piping MSR -

1st. Ashley McMichael. 2nd. Kevin Rogers. 3rd. Alan Ferguson.

Senior Piping MSR -

1st. Gary Waterson. 2nd. Julian Dorman. 3rd. Andrew Carlisle.

Hornpipe & Jig -

1st. Glen Cupples. 2nd. Gary Waterson. 3rd. Andrew Carlisle.

Overall Ulster Piping Champion -

1st. Gary Waterson. 2nd. Glen Guppies. 3rd. Andrew Carlisle.

Practice Pad -

1st. Connor Burnside. 2nd. Lloyd Burgess. 3rd. John Herron.

Advanced Drum Pad -

1st. Kyle Black.
Juvenile drumming under 14 - 1st. Clarke Campbell. 2nd. Blake McVeigh. 3rd. Ian McCombe.

Juvenile drumming under 16 -

1st. Gareth McLees. 2nd. Steven Paynter. 3rd. Aaron Mclean.

Junior Drumming -

1st. William Glenholmes. 2nd. Johnathan Hoy. 3rd. John Wilson.

Intermediate Drumming -

1st. Ian Lawson. 2nd. Nicholas Harvey. 3rd. Conor Sherry.

Senior Drumming MSR -

1st. Philip Bell. 2nd. Neil Ussher. 3rd. Gavin Noade.

Hornpipe & Jig -

1st. Philip Bell. 2nd. Brendan Megoran. 3rd. Gavin Noade.

Overall Ulster Drumming Champion -

1st. Philip Bell. 2nd. Gavin Noade. 3rd. Brendan Megoran.

Ulster Star