Yesterday’s mention of the brilliant playing of P/M Iain Morrison, Lewis, brought to mind this famous picture of all the Gold Medallists of the Queen’s Own Highlanders attending the 1970 Northern Meeting. It features Iain standing top right.
I am not sure if everyone is au fait with the individuals and their tunes, and to the modern generation these gentlemen will probably seem as mysterious as the early MacCrimmons. So, history novitiates and buffs alike, with pencils at the ready, here goes:
Sitting front (l – r):
Hugh MacRae (served 1923 – 27) Inverness Gold Medal with the Massacre of Glencoe in 1937.
Captain Donald Ross (DR) MacLennan (1924 – 48), GS’s half-brother, both Gold Medals 1956, Inverness with Lament for Queen Ann and Oban with Earl of Seaforth’s Salute.
Captain John A. MacLellan (joined regiment 1936 and was still serving at the time of the photograph); won the Inverness Medal in 1959 with In Praise of Morag and Oban in 1957 with MacLeod of Raasay’s Salute. He won the Open Piobaireachd at Oban in 1949 with The Vaunting, in 1958 with Colin Roy MacKenzie’s Lament and in 1959 with Lord Lovat’s Lament. Captain John also won the Clasp at Inverness in 1958 with the Daughter’s Lament and in 1963 with Salute on the Birth of Rory Mor MacLeod.
P/M Donald MacLeod served from 1932 till 1962. He won the Inverness medal in 1947 with Glengarry’s March and the Oban in 1954 with Patrick Og MacCrimmon’s Lament. He won the Gold Clasp at Inverness with the following tunes: Old Men of the Shells (1948), End of the High Bridge (1949), Salute to Donald (1952), Earl of Seaforth’s Salute (1955), Battle of Ballandruishaig (1959), Lament for the Laird of Anapool (1961), Lament for Patrick Og (1962), the MacRae’s March (1954). Donald took the Open Piobaireachd at Oban in 1953, 57 and 61 (tunes not available – grateful for any info).
Standing (l - r):
William M. MacDonald (Inverness) served 1935 - 45. He won the Inverness Medal in 1955 with Patrick Og and the Oban medal the same year with The Vaunting. Willie also won the Clasp at Inverness in 1956 with Lament for the Duke of Hamilton.
Iain MacFadyen served 1957 - 59 and won the Inverness medal in 1957 with End of the High Bridge and the Oban medal the following year with Battle of the Pass of Crieff. Iain went on to win the Inverness Clasp in (I believe) 1980 with the Sister's Lament. Corrections welcome.
William MacDonald (Benbecula) served 1958 - 1963 and got the Inverness medal with The Vaunting in 1966 and the equivalent at Oban the following year with Mary's Praise. Willie also took the Open at Oban with Rory MacLoude's Lament (1969) and the Clasp at Inverness in 1967 with the Lament for Donald Ban MacCrimmon.
John MacDougall, who passed away only last year, served with the regiment from 1958 - 1960. He won the Inverness medal in 1960 with Lament for Captain MacDougall and the Oban in 1969 with the Battle of the Pass of Crieff. John went on to win the senior events at both Oban and Inverness in the same year (1978?) the Clasp with the MacRae's March. Again, confirmation appreciated.
John D. Burgess served 1958 - 1960 and took both medals in the same year (1950) when aged only 16. His tunes were Castle Menzies (Inverness) and In Praise of Morag (Oban).
Corporal (later Pipe Major) Iain Morrison joined the regiment in 1963 and was still serving at the time the photograph was taken. P/M Morrison won the Inverness medal in 1969 with Lament for the Viscount of Dundee and went on to win the Clasp with Lament for the Dead in, I think, 1982.
• Check out our full lists of Gold Medallists here. If anyone can fill in the tune gaps in the lists for us we'd be very grateful.
2 thoughts on “PP Ed’s Blog: Gold Medallists of the Queen’s Own Highlanders”
I had pipe lessons from P/M Donald MacLeod in 1961 -62 at Fort George (Inverness shire). I served with Ian Morrison in the Queens Own Highlanders…a great guy!
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