Category Archives: Latest News

news

Grampian Games’ Piping League placings

The placings thus far of the Grampian Games Association Piping League are: 1= Gordon McCready 1= Faye Henderson 2= Eddie Gaul 2= Ben Duncan 3= Calum Brown 3= Allan Russell 4= Bruce Macdonald 4= Alan Clark This is based on the results from Gordon Castle and Aberdeen: Ceòl Mòr Gordon Castle 1) Gordon McCready 2) .…
Read more

Inveraray takes the Europeans

Inveraray & District won the Grade 1 European Pipe Band Championships today at Forres. In an day of very changeable conditions, Pipe Major Stuart Liddell's band nudged Field Marshall Montgomery Pipe Band into second place. Results: Grade 1 – 1. Inveraray & District; 2. Field Marshall Montgomery; 3. Scottish Power; 4. St Laurence O'Toole; 5.…
Read more

2017 Natal Scottish Gathering

Entries to the 2017 Natal Scottish Gathering end on Wednesday, 14th June. The contest will take place on Saturday, 24th June at Natal Mounted Rifles Headquarters in Masabalala Yengwa Avenue, Durban, South Africa. 2017 NSG solo entry form 2017 NSG Band entry form
Read more

College of Piping Summer Schools 2017

The College of Piping’s respected and popular summer schools are well established. This year they begin from the 3rd of July and last all summer until the week beginning 14th of August.
There are many social, cultural and academic benefits to attending one of our summer schools. One of the most documented benefits is the confidence it gives so many. The College's supervised and supportive environment has been specifically designed with our students in mind. The new-found confidence our schools engender is not just social – it can also instil an academic confidence.  In addition, the social skills developed are far reaching. Students learn to interact and make friends from day one.

Pipers at all levels and from all ages benefit from the intensive nature of the week. We have students from all nationalities as well, making your week genuinely international. The supportive environment is also highly valued by students.

Enrol on one of our schools today.

Communn Phiobairachd Uibhist agus Bharraidh

HIGHLANDS AND ISLANDS YOUNG PIPER OF THE YEAR COMPETITION, THURSDAY 20 JULY 2017,  SGOIL LIONACLEIT, BENBECULA, WESTERN ISLES, Starts 9AM

A distinctive feature of this competition is the opportunity for young players to take part in junior events.  As well as taking part in the competition, the children will have the opportunity to hear high calibre piping from senior competitors piping at national and international levels.

Novice Piping 2017
Open Chanter 2017
Under 15 2017
Under 18 2017
30 Years and Under 2017

Butter Fingers' blog, 09/06/17

The aftermath of the mini tornado at Cornhill last week. Photo: Shona Hay.

Great weather we're having! The charming highland games that takes place at Cornhill in the northeast of Scotland, had to be abandoned last weekend due to a mini tornado swept through the site. The storm wreaked havoc on the park and lifted the First Aid tent over a marquee and into the arena. There were no serious injuries but the noise was terrifying.

"Ten minutes before this we had a beautiful sunny day," the games secretary said. "It was just torrential. Everybody ran for cover and a wind seemed to appear from nowhere and lifted our First Aid tent and some of the stall holders' tents. The noise was just terrifying – the noise of the wind and the folks screaming.”

Aye, welcome to summer in Scotland. It put me in mind of the photo on the cover of the May Piping Times which showed young Anna Magee battling valiantly through her tune at Durness last summer.

Belfast tomorrow. Now where did I put my cape?


Due to unforeseen circumstances, the ceòl mòr has been cancelled at this weekend’s Corgarff Highland Games.


Frances Duncan, the wife of Jock and mother of Pipe Major Ian Duncan and the late Gordon  Duncan, passed away yesterday after a long and difficult illness. She was a lovely woman with whom I had the pleasure of meeting on a few occasions over the years.

My sincere condolences go out to the Duncan family.


Guy Ritchie's new movie, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, has just been released in UK cinemas. Forget David Beckham's cameo appearance – watch out for a couple of appearances by the City of Leeds Pipe Band. Seriously.


It won't have escaped your notice that it's been 50 years since The Beatles' released their seminal album Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

I dusted off my vinyl – aye, vinyl! – copy yesterday after a friend told me that amongst all the calliope background sounds at the end of the John Lennon song, Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite you can hear a bit of Scotland the Brave.

I cannae hear it, though. How about you?


The organisers of the European Pipe Band Championships at Forres have sent a wee reminder about the World Tattie Scone Contest that’s taking place at the same time. Now I do like a tattie scone (fried in butter on a morning roll and with brown sauce, thank you) but I suspect I’ll have other things to concentrate on during the day. However, if any of you take part do let yer auld da’ here sample your efforts.

If anyone wants to enter here is the entry form: ISSUED -Tattie Scone Entrie Now Open.

Butter Fingers

faviconCollege of Piping End of term competition

Open to all College members and students, including those attending Evening Classes, Seasonal Schools (Summer, Easter or Autumn), Network students, Overseas Summer School participants and pipers from Affiliated Bands. Trophies, College pins and prizes in all events.

Date: Thursday 29th June 2017, 6.30 pm for 7pm start.

Venue: College of Piping, Piping Hall, Otago Street

Event 1. Chanter - Beginner - Two part March - Any time signature
No age bar in events 1

Event 2. Novice Piping March - All Ages (Open) - Two Parts - Any time signature
Event 3. Novice Piping - Slow Air - All Ages (Open) -Two Parts.

Event 4. Under 18 - March Strathspey & Reel
Event 5. Under 18 - Piobaireachd - Whole tune including Taorluath and Crunluath.

Event 6. Adult Novice (Over 18) - March Strathspey & Reel – 2 Parted or 4 Parted
Event 7. Adult Novice (Over 18) – Piobaireachd Ground

Event 8. Open March - Strathspey & Reel
Event 9. Open Piobaireachd - Whole tune including Taorluath and Crunluath.

Competitors in events 2 - 5 are not allowed to play in event 6 - 9.
Competitors play their own choice of tune in all events.
If not sure see your tutor about your grade.
Novice is equivalent of PDQB level 3 standard and under.

Entry Form

 

Silver Chanter line-up announced

The pipers who will compete for this year's Silver Chanter in the historic drawing room at Dunvegan Castle on the evening on Dunvegan Castle are: Finlay Johnston Derek Midgley Ian K. MacDonald Cameron Drummond Callum Beaumont Roddy MacLeod Malcolm MacRae will adjudicate. [caption id="attachment_17204" align="alignleft" width="1540"] The Silver Chanter was first competed for in 1967. Last…
Read more

Greater Glasgow Police Pipe Sergeant Duncan Nicholson leads the funeral procession to the church for the funeral mass. Photo: PA.

The funeral has taken place of 14-year-old Eilidh MacLeod, who died in the recent Manchester Arena terrorist attack. Greater Glasgow Police Pipe Band’s Pipe Sergeant, Duncan Nicholson, piped the large procession to Barra’s Church of Our Lady, Star of the Sea for the funeral mass. Eilidh was then buried at the cemetery on Vatersay, the island connected by a causeway to Barra.

Scottish Government ministers – including Deputy First Minister John Swinney, Humza Yousaf MSP and Na h-Eileanan an Iar MSP Alasdair Allan – attended. Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable, Ian Hopkins and Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham sent a message and wreath. Their message read: "We may not have known you, but you will forever be in the hearts and thoughts of all at Greater Manchester Police and the people of Manchester."

Eilidh’s funeral is the first one to come from the terrorist attack. She was among 22 people who were killed at the pop concert on Monday, May 22, which also left dozens injured. Eilidh’s friend, Laura MacIntyre, was also seriously injured in the bombing and is still in hospital in Manchester.

Laura MacIntyre and Eilidh MacLeod.

Businesses on Barra closed for the day as a mark of respect and also to allow staff to attend the funeral. The local community has been fundraising for the families of both victims and money will be donated to Cobhair Bharraigh, a local home-based support service and day care centre, which was Eilidh's favourite charity.

Yesterday, Eilidh’s body was repatriated to Barra. On the arrival of the plane at the cockle strand airstrip at Traigh Mhor. Father John Paul MacKinnon performed a blessing over the casket, which was draped in the green and white flag of Barra. Duncan Nicholson then piped the procession from the aeroplane to the hearse.

Duncan’s father, Donald Patrick Nicholson (76), had taught Eilidh since she was eight. He said: “I've known her since she was in primary school. She was absolutely great, brilliant, a fantastic girl. You couldn't get better.” Eilidh was a piper with Sgoil Lionacleit Pipe Band.

The College of Piping's symbolic annual feu payment of a 'penny and pibroch' for ownership of the site of the MacCrimmon 'college' on Skye was paid on Saturday (4th June) at a gusty Boreraig, Isle of Skye.

Colin MacLellan (Director of Piping), Stuart Letford (Piping Times editor) and Archie MacLean from Edinbane played respectively Salute on the Birth of Rory Mòr, Lament for Mary MacLeod, The Pretty Dirk and I Got a Kiss of the King's Hand. The pipers were joined at the MacCrimmon cairn by a small gathering of local piping enthusiasts.

Colin MacLellan then handed over the penny to Jeroen Roskam of MacLeod Estate.

Thanks to Cailean MacLean of Skyemedia for the photographs.