Robert Wallace: It is with sadness that I report the passing of Geoff Hore, Auckland, New Zealand, after a long illness. He had been suffering from motor neurone disease.
In decades of collecting pipe music books Geoff, an NZ Gold Medal piobaireachd winner, had amassed a vast collection of works and there were very few editions he did not possess, some very rare. In the last few years he had been working on updating Roderick Cannon’s seminal, work ‘A Bibliography of Bagpipe Music’ and transferring it to the internet. Sad and ironic that these two dedicated gentlemen should pass away within weeks of each other.
I spent a good bit of time with Geoff on his visits to Scotland. He had been planning to come over next year or the year after. He talked of undergoing stem cell treatment. This was not to be, but his work lives on.
My last email from him reads: ‘There has been a big change in how I am going about the update of Roderick Cannon’s Bibliography. The website I had access to is more than a little tentative in relation to its longevity. About a year ago I was communicating with Barnaby Brown and he has introduced me to a website where he publishes many articles pertaining
to bagpipe and its music. The website is bibliography.altpibroch.com and I am currently about half way through transferring all the data over.
‘As I am entering all the new files I am updating them as a direct result of the research in those two articles [about Logan and Patersons Publishers, the first published on Piping Press here]. About six months ago I posted both these articles onto the website as they are part of the new Bibliography.
‘I have also decided that once I have finished the update of the Bibliography it will be appropriate to pass it on to someone else;
I will be 69 soon. Barnaby tells me that the Bibliography and updates are used by students in some university courses and has suggested that one of these establishments could take it over. The senior students could carry out research as part of their studies and then, with the approval of their lecturers, carry on the updating processes. This would be a great way of seeing the project carry on well after I have passed on!’
I earnestly hope that Geoff’s last wish will be carried out and J David Hester of altpibroch.com has confirmed that the work will continue to be available on his website. I hope that someone will step into the breach and continue the updating of Roderick and Geoff’s important work so ensuring that their research is preserved for future generations.
Geoff Hore was a wonderful, warm, enthusiastic man, instantly likeable with infectious humour. His passing is a loss to piping but, like Roderick, he left a significant body of work from which we will continue to benefit and which will serve as a memorial to this dedicated servant of piping. I offer my sincere condolences to Geoff’s family and friends.
We would welcome any tributes from readers who knew Geoff and his work.