Army piping has suffered a significant loss with the imminent departure of two of its leading Pipe Majors.
P/M Ben Duncan (above left), Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, is leaving after 15 years service to take up the job of Assistant PIpe Major at George Watson’s College in Edinburgh. Ben begins at Watson’s in September.
P/M Peter MacGregor, 4 Scots, The Highlanders, is leaving to become the piping Instructor at Erskine Stewart’s Melville School also in Edinburgh. Peter has served for 24 years and was latterly Senior Pipe Major at the Army School of Piping at Inchdrewer House.
Both men are pictured at Wellington Barracks, London, following last weekend’s spectacular pageant celebration to mark HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. It was their last official parade representing Army Pipes and Drums.
Both Pipe Majors have achieved significant success in the solo world, all the more impressive given their military commitments. Both made major contributions to the teaching programme at the Army School of Piping.
Said Ben: ‘It was a big decision for me to leave the Army after such a long period but when the chance of a job at Watson’s came up I decided to apply. After making a short leet of four from 16 applicants I was lucky to be selected.
‘I am very much looking forward to working with the pupils and with Ross Harvey who takes over as Pipe Major from Iain Simpson.
‘I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in the Army and it will be a big wrench for me. But I will now be able to concentrate more on my solo piping career. I am very excited about my new job.’
George Watson’s is one of the most successful juvenile pipe bands on the circuit: 39 Major Championships, including six World titles and 11 Champion of Champions titles.
In the Novice Juvenile grade, 19 Major Championships have been won, with four more World Championship awards for Watson’s. Read more about the band here.