In a shock move, the organisers of one of Scotland’s longest established Highland games has announced that they will no longer hold solo piping or pipe band contests during their August gathering. In a statement to the Competing Pipers’ Association they said:
‘As you will be aware the number of both participants & spectators at Crieff Games piping competitions has dwindled over the past few years. We believe that this is down to the World Pipe Band Championship now taking place over two days on the same weekend. We have discussed at length, as well as implemented many changes to try to create a better attraction on the day with unfortunately little or no support from the RSPBA. Unfortunately after much soul-searching we have decided that neither the solo piping or band competitions are financially sustainable. Should the World Pipe Band competition change to a different weekend from Crieff we may well review the situation then (which may happen) but until then we cannot continue with the same structure as previous years. Believe me this decision has not been taken lightly but I hope you understand our views. I wish the CPA all the best with future competitions and hopefully we can work together again sometime in the future.
Ian Stewart, Vice Chairman, Crieff Highland Games’
Donald Macleod, Secretary of the CPA commented: ‘The CPA comment that whilst the clash with the World Pipe Band Championship is clearly the main issue in this instance, this serves as a further warning that if we Competing Pipers do not support the Games, the organisers will simply cancel piping events due to lack of interest.’
Crieff Highland Games were established in 1870 and has run competitive piping events since that time. The decision to turn their backs on serious piping follows that of Stirling Games in recent years. Stay tuned to pipingpress.com for more on this story.