Businessman Philip Pass has been in touch about an unfortunate development regarding Highland dress…..
‘Dear Kind Piping Press Folk, If you haven’t already heard, recent changes at Robert Mackie, manufacturers of traditional Scottish bonnets since 1845 means that Scotland has just lost its last bonnet production line and Stewarton, in Ayrshire, known as ‘the Bonnet Toun’ since the 1600s, its last and only bonnet maker.
‘And if the collective ‘we’ do nothing, this bit of history, these beautifully made glengarries and balmorals, will stay gone forever from Scotland.
‘House of Tartan Ltd (Crieff, Perthshire) is driving a plan to establish a new mini-factory to continue the tradition of manufacture in the Bonnet Toun . This facility will be a destination where visitors will be able to see hats being finished, learn the history of bonnet making in the area, and buy Scottish headwear products to keep it all going.
‘And of course, pipe bands and solo pipers who wish to continue buying Scottish-made headwear will again be able to.
‘But we cannot do this withour help. A fiver from all pipers everywhere would pretty much do it. I’m writing to ask if you’d be willing to help, share and get the word out there please? Our ‘GoFundMe’ page is here.
‘We continue to engage with local bodies, grant givers, industry, charities, the natural underwriters of such projects, but due to their nature they cannot always be relied on to help enough or in time.
‘However, this is worthy, it’s urgent and once it’s gone it’s gone. Please feel free to contact me for any further details.’
RSPBA Summer School
Association Chief Executive Colin Mulhern has issued more details of this year’s school. Piping instruction is led by John Nevans, Summer School Principal and Member of the College Board.
Lead drumming instructor is Allan Craig is a retired Grade One Leading Drummer and a drumming instructor in schools in Fort William.
John served as piper and Pipe Major in several bands including five years with Vale of Atholl. His involvement with the Summer School goes back to the early 1990s and has served as principal for 30 of those years.
Said John: ‘I have tried to make the week as varied and interesting as possible to allow you to look beyond what you know just now and look towards what you can be in the future. Looking forward to meeting you in July.’ For details contact Colin at Headquarters here.