By The Editor
The Office of the Scottish Charities Register (OSCR) have confirmed that, despite stories to the contrary in the national press last weekend, they are NOT conducting any formal inquiry into the affairs of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association.
In a statement on their website the RSPBA say: ‘Following the articles in the national press last weekend, the Board of Directors would like to state that the Office of Scottish Charities Register (OSCR) have confirmed that there is no formal inquiry into the RSPBA. They have a few questions and we will be providing them with all of the detailed information relating to the refurbishment of 45 Washington Street.’
Piping Press understands that the articles in the Times and Sunday Mail newspapers were brought to the attention of OSCR. Unfortunately both were unbalanced and based on concerns previously voiced by specific individuals on social media.
Neither story made any mention of the detailed report on the HQ refurbishment carried in Piping Press and on the Association’s own website from January 2.
In the circumstances however, OSCR is duty bound to respond to queries from the public or any interested party. The regulator has a legal requirement to ensure that all aspects of any charity’s affairs are conducted within Scotland’s charity law.
However a request for information to a charity does not constitute a formal inquiry and is more a routine fulfilling of statutory obligation.
OSCR have confirmed that there is no formal inquiry into the RSPBA charity but are contacting the trustees ‘to get a better understanding of how the charity operates’.
Inside the new Washington Street HQ, the world centre for the pipe band movement…
It is clear from the RSPBA’s statement that they will provide OSCR with all the information they require.
Whilst individuals are perfectly entitled to voice genuine concerns, it is a pity that the Association is having to deal with this at time when everyone should be looking forward to the new season with a super new headquarters building as a base for operations. But their work goes on.
On the very day (last Sunday) that one of these stories was doing the rounds there were dozens of young pipers in the new building being taught and examined for free in world class surroundings. In the words of Education Officer Pat Whelan, ‘the place was buzzing’.
It is this work that most people in the pipe band fraternity will be focussing on. Moreover bands can be re-assured that preparations for the new season are well in hand and nothing will distract Association officials and staff from that.
There is a huge groundswell of support for the RSPBA and its army of volunteers. And of course any band or individual member can go along to the AGM on March 14 where they will have the opportunity to question the Association directors from the floor.