SLOT Pull Out of All Irelands/ Band Sizes/ Ulster Championships

St Laurence O’Toole Pipe Band have informed the Irish Pipe Band Association of their need to withdraw from the All Ireland Pipe Band Championships, due to take place in New Ross, Co. Wexford tomorrow. The band has suffered an outbreak of covid this week with a significant number of players testing positive with others displaying symptoms. The band reported: ‘We were looking forward to defending our title which we won…

News From the Northern Ireland Pipe Band Scene

A couple of months ago I was at the launch of a new book of piping tunes, the majority of which were composed by County Armagh piper Jim Livingston.  I have rarely come across many tune book launches locally over the years except for the Sean Maloney publication several years ago, although there have been many celebrated local composers whose work has been included in other collections published in Scotland….

It Is Time We Addressed the Issue of Pipe Band Sizes

I had this message from Ken Stewart, Northern Ireland, the other day: ‘I just stumbled on an old programme of the European Championships in Stranraer 1989. There were 24 bands playing in Grade 1 and 34 in Grade 2. It is startling just how many of these bands are on longer operational.’ Indeed it is Ken. There is a decline and it is creeping up on us. And don’t use the…

Drumtochty Games/ Wallacestone PB Anniversary Tune

Last Saturday’s weather at Drumtochty, Aberdeenshire was, as some would say, ‘braw’, with sunshine and a cooling breeze.  Drumtochty Glen is a picturesque location, more so in such weather. Bearing in mind the ever present talk of cost of living problems, the games were well attended. This was encouraging for the organisers. As to the piping, we had only three in the adults and four in the junior competitions. Despite the low turn-out, the playing made…

Editor’s Notebook: Worlds Prices/ SPA Meeting/ PS Summer School/ Festival of Junior Piping/ Luss Games

Tickets are now on sale for the Worlds and already there has been a frisson of discontent regarding spectator prices. One reader has written: ‘I have noticed that tickets for the Worlds have just gone on sale on the Tickets (theworlds.co.uk) ‘I am a little shocked at the various add-ons to the face value of the ticket, thus…. A 12% booking fee will be added to all tickets A £1…