Glenfiddich Axe Fiddle Championship

Following yesterday’s story on Piping Press the William Grant Foundation have issued the following press release:
Scottish distiller, William Grant & Sons which owns the Glenfiddich brand has reaffirmed its commitment to supporting traditional Scottish music and maintaining its sponsorship of the Glenfiddich Piping Championships under the auspices of the William Grant Foundation.

The Glenfiddich Piping Championship was created in 1974 and the William Grant Foundation, established to support communities and good causes in Scotland through charitable grants and donations, has confirmed it will continue to invest in this key date in the traditional Scottish music calendar. Over the years the event has risen in prominence and is now the pinnacle of achievement for solo pipers and attracts a global audience. 

The Foundation has also confirmed it will provide more general support for Scottish culture and heritage through its grant-making. Subsequently, 2016 will be the last year William Grant & Sons coordinates the Glenfiddich Fiddle Championship, an event it created in 1989. Instead, the Foundation will look to encourage and nurture participation in Scottish fiddle playing by making grants available to other organisations.

The 2016 event will be a unique celebration of the history of the Glenfiddich Fiddle Championship and all former champions have been invited to attend and perform.

Chief Executive of the William Grant Foundation, Nick Addington, said: “The creation of the Foundation demonstrates the commitment of William Grant & Sons to supporting good causes, building on a long legacy of philanthropy within this family-owned business. In 2016, the Foundation will distribute in the region of £2 million to good causes – more than in any previous year. 

“In relation to music, we aim to help connect more people to Scotland’s arts and heritage, and to support initiatives that promote, develop and enrich Scotland’s contemporary cultural identity. Whilst we feel that the Glenfiddich Piping Championship continues to be well supported and acclaimed within the piping world as the premier competition for solo piping, we feel that the resources currently dedicated to organising the Glenfiddich Fiddle Championship could support Scottish music, including fiddle playing more effectively through grant-making to other organisations.

“We’re extremely grateful to everyone who has helped to make the Fiddle Championship such a special event over the years. I hope many people will join us at Blair Castle on Sunday 30 October this year as we welcome back many former Glenfiddich fiddle champions to celebrate the wonderful tradition of Scottish fiddle music and the talents of its best contemporary performers. I am sure it will be a fitting finale.”

Both events will take place at Blair Castle, Blair Atholl, Perthshire over the weekend of Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 October 2016. The Glenfiddich Piping Championship will take place on Saturday 29 October, followed by the Celebration of the Glenfiddich Fiddle Championship on the Sunday, 30 October. Both events are open to the public.

For more information on both events, see