Oban Gold Medallists

Probably the most coveted award in piping is the Highland Society of London’s Gold Medal, awarded every year at the two main competitions, the Argyllshire Gathering and the Northern Meeting.

To win one ‘medal’ is an outstanding achievement; to win two is more difficult; to win them both in the same year is something seldom managed such is the combination of favourable circumstances and ability required to do so.

In relatively modern piping history it has only been completed 11 times. Here are the pipers who have managed this very special double success:

A rare picture of the first 'same year' double Gold Medallist William Lawrie
A rare picture of the first ‘same year’ double Gold Medallist, William Lawrie

Willie Lawrie (1910)
George Yardley (1911)
John MacDonald,
South Uist, (1926)
RB Nicol, Balmoral (1930)
John D. Burgess (1950)
William MacDonald,
Inverness (1955)
DR MacLennan (1956)
Hector MacFadyen,
Pennyghael (1964)
Andrew Wright (1970)
John Cairns, Ontario (1999)
Douglas Murray (2014)
Ian K MacDonald, Ontario (2016)

Gold Medallists at Oban:
1873 DS MacDonald
1874 Ronald MacKenzie
1875 John MacBean
1876 Malcolm Macpherson (Calum Piobair)
1877 John MacBean
1878 William MacLennan, Dundee Police
1879 George MacDonald, Morar
1880 Robert MacKinnon
1881 John MacColl
1882 Angus MacDonald, Morar
1883 Angus MacRae, Callander
1884 John MacDougall Gillies, Aberdeen
1885 John Cameron, QOH
1886 P/M Robert Meldrum
1887 P/M John MacKay
1888 Kenneth MacDonald
1889 John Macpherson
1890 Norman Macpherson
1891 DC Mather, Lochcarron
1892 Archibald MacColl
1893 William Robb
1894 George Ross, Black Watch
1895 John MacKenzie
1896 Gavin MacDougall, Aberfeldy
1897 John MacDonald, Inverness
1898 Farquhar MacRae, Glasgow
1899 Murdo MacKenzie
1900 No competition
1901 John Wallace, Helensburgh
1902 Cpl. Piper William Ross, Scots Guards
1903 Donald Mathieson
1904 GS McLennan, Gordons
1905 George S Allan, Scottish Horse
1906 James Center, Edinburgh
1907 P/M Willie Ross
1908 Roddy Campbell, Edinburgh
1909 Willie Gray, Govan Police
1910 Willie Lawrie, Ballachulish
1911 George Yardley, Cambuslang
1912 Willie MacLean, Kilcreggan
1913 P/M James Taylor, HLI

No contests during WW1

1919 P /M J O Duff, Edinburgh
1920 P/M William Taylor, Edinburgh
1921 P/M J Mathieson
1922 P/M Robert Reid, Glasgow
1923 AM Calder, Edinburgh
1924 P/M Chisholm, HLI
1925 David Ross, Rosehall, Sutherland
1926 John MacDonald, City of Glasgow Police
1927 John Wilson, Edinburgh
1928 Hugh Kennedy, Tiree
1929 P/M J D MacDonald, Scots Guards
1930 R B Nicol, Crathie
1931 Robert U Brown, Muir of Ord
1932 Pipe/Sgt JB Robertson, Scots Guards
1933 Malcolm R MacPherson, Invershin
1934 P/M Charles Smith, Black Watch
1935 Nicol MacCallum, Argylls
1936 Donald Iain MacKenzie, Tongue
1937 Donald F Ross, Lochgilphead
1938 Roderick MacDonald, Glasgow Police

No contests during WW2

1946 P/M Peter Bain, Glasgow, ‘Battle of Auldearn No 1’
1947 R G Hardie, Glasgow, ‘Corrienessan’s Salute’
1948 Donald MacPherson, Glasgow, ‘Old Men of the Shells’
1949 P/S R ‘Mickey’ MacKay, Camerons ‘Lament for Donald Duaghal MacKay’
1950 John D Burgess, Edinburgh, ‘In Praise of Morag’
1951 P/M Donald MacLean, Lewis, ‘MacDonald’s Salute’
1952 P/M Ronald MacCallum, lnveraray, ‘MacIntosh’s Lament’
1953 James McColl, Shotts, ‘King’s Taxes’
1954 P/M Donald MacLeod, Seaforths, ‘Lament for Patrick Og MacCrimmon’
1955 William M MacDonald, Inverness, ‘The Vaunting’
l 956 P/M Donald R MacLennan, ‘Earl of Seaforth’s Salute’
1957 RSM John MacLellan, Seaforths, ‘Macleod of Raasay’s Salute’
1958 lain MacFadyen, Glasgow, ‘Battle of the Pass of Crieff’
1959 Kenneth MacDonald, Glasgow, ‘Donald Gruamach’s March’
1960 John MacFadyen, Glasgow, ‘Black Donald’s March’
1961 Ronald Lawrie, Glasgow Police, ‘MacDougall’s Gathering’
1962 Seumas MacNeill, Glasgow, ‘Lament for Patrick Og MacCrimmon’
1963 Sgt. Angus MacDonald, Scots Guards, ‘Unjust Incarceration’
1964 Hector MacFadyen, Pennyghael, ‘MacNab’s Salute’
1965 Neil MacEachern, Islay, ‘The Bicker’
1966 Duncan MacFadyen, Johnstone, ‘The Vaunting’
1967 William MacDonald, Benbecula, ‘Mary’s Praise’
1968 Thomas Pearston, Glasgow, ‘Melbank’s Salute’
1969 John MacDougall, Arbroath, ‘Battle of the Pass of Crieff’
1970 Andrew Wright, Paisley, ‘Nameless, hiharin dro o dro’
1971 Finlay MacNeill, Inverness, ‘Lament for John Garve MacLeod of Raasay’
1972 Hugh MacCallum, Bridge of Allan, ‘In Praise of Morag’
1973 Angus J MacLellan, Glasgow Police, ‘Glengarry’s March’
1974 Kenneth MacLean, Glasgow, ‘Battle of Bealach nam Brog’
1975 Arthur G Gillies, Kilchrenan, ‘Farewell to the Laird of Islay’
1976 Malcolm McRae, Kirriemuir, ‘Parading of the MacDonalds’
1977 Ian Clowe, Dumfries, ‘Welcome Johnny Back Again’
1978 James McIntosh, Dundee, ‘Big Spree’
1979  William Livingstone, Ontario, ‘Lament for Mary MacLeod’
1980 Murray Henderson, Eassie, ‘Lachlan MacNeill Campbell of Kintarbert’s Fancy’
1981 Gavin Stoddart, Edinburgh, ‘Prince’s Salute’
1982 P/M Evan MacRae, ‘Flame of Wrath’
1983 John Wilson, Strathclyde Police, ‘Battle of Auldearn No 2’
1984 Michael Cusack, Texas, ‘Queen Anne’s Lament’
1985 Robert Wallace, Glasgow, ‘King’s Taxes’
1986 Alfred Morrison, Bishopton, ‘Sir Ewan Cameron of Lochiel’s Salute’
1987 John Hanning, NZ, ‘Isabel MacKay’
1988 Roderick MacLeod, Cumbernauld, ‘Beloved Scotland’
1989 Cpl Alasdair Gillies, QOH, ‘Lament for the Viscount of Dundee’
1990 Sgt Brian Donaldson, Scots Guards, ‘The Vaunting’
1991 James MacGillivray, Ontario, ‘Big Spree’
1992 Colin MacLellan, Ontario, ‘Blue Ribbon’

P/M Gordon Walker in full Army fig

1993 Cpl Gordon Walker, RHF, ‘Prince’s Salute’
1994 Dr Angus MacDonald, Portree, ‘Lament for MacSwan of Roaig’
1995 William McCallum, Clydebank, ‘Rory MacLeod’s Lament’
1996 Angus MacColl, Oban, ‘Lament for Patrick Og MacCrimmon’
1997 James Murray, Cupar, ‘Battle of Auldearn No2’
1998 Niall Matheson, Inverness, ‘Old Men of the Shells’
1999 John Cairns, Ontario, ‘Lament for Finlay’
2000 Michael Rogers, USA, ‘Sobieski’s Salute’
2001 Jack Lee, BC, ‘Lament for Capt. Donald MacKenzie’
2002 lain Speirs, Edinburgh, ‘King’s Taxes’
2003 Bruce Gandy, Nova Scotia, ‘Battle of the Pass of Crieff’
2004 Stuart Liddell, Inveraray, ‘Lament for Patrick Og MacCrimmon’
2005 Euan MacCrimmon, Inverness, ‘MacLeod of MacLeod’s Lament’
2006 Greg Wilson, NZ, ‘Lord MacDonald’s Lament’
2007 Richard Hawke, NZ, ‘Rory MacLeod’s Lament’
2008 Niall Stewart, Kyle, ‘Blind Piper’s Obstinacy’
2009 Alastair Dunn, N. Ireland, ‘Lament for the Viscount of Dundee’
2010 Faye Henderson, Angus, ‘Lament for Donald Duaghal MacKay’
2011 Callum Beaumont, Bo’ness, ‘Keppoch’s March’
2012 Finlay Johnston, Glasgow, ‘Farewell to the Laird of Islay’
2013 Alan Bevan, British Columbia, ‘Young Laird of Dungallon’s Salute’
2014 Douglas Murray, Cupar, ‘MacNeill of Barra’s March’
2015 John Angus Smith, ‘Lament for Donald Duaghal MacKay’
2016 Ian K. MacDonald, Canada, ‘Mary’s Praise’
2017 Craig Sutherland, Crieff, ‘Lord Lovat’s Lament’
2018 Stuart Easton, NZ, ‘Brother’s Lament’
2019 Andrew Hayes, Canada, ‘Old Men of the Shells’

No contests during covid pandemic

2022 Jamie Forrester, London, ‘Phanton Piper of the Corrieyairick’
2023 Alasdair Henderson, Dunoon, ‘Menzies Salute’

Check out the Northern Meeting Gold Medal list here.

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