2012 Archived News
2nd Aug New Pipe Major
1st Aug Linlithgow Palace
28th July The European Pipe Band Championships 2012
5th July Playing for Princess Anne
30th June The British Pipe Band Championships 2012
19th May The Scottish Pipe Band Championships 2012
12th May Dunbar Highland Games
11th May Playing at Gosford House
12th April Wedding of Stephen and Susan
9th April Hugh Lindsay
7th April Fund-raiser at the Steeple
25th March Competition Preparations
27th Feb Store Opening
5th Jan Happy New Year!
On Friday the 20th of July, after five years of hard work and loyal service, Gary Nimmo announced his resignation from the band, due to work commitments. Following two weeks of rather turbulent times, during which the band still met for practices, and still discharged duties to play both in competition and at other events, the band met for an EGM on Thursday the 2nd of August to elect a new Pipe Major.
Duncan Drew was elected to the position of Pipe Major, to serve the remaining two months until the end of the season and the band hold their AGM. Duncan is a piper with a wealth of experience, who has held the position of Pipe Major with us on a previous occasion. He rejoined the band a little more than a year ago.
We therefore wish to offer Duncan the very best of luck in taking over under somewhat difficult circumstances, and hope he receives the fullest support possible from all those associated with the band.
We would also like to thank Gary for his several years of service, and wish him every success in the future.
The band have just completed a sequence of four performances at Linlithgow Palace. Each week, the band gathered outside the palace and performed a short set, of about 30 minutes in duration. The performances were broadcast live via webcam, and so were watched by both locals and those further afield.
Fortunately, the weather for the performances was mostly benign. There was only one evening on which the rains were severe. However, even on that evening the band played on!
The third Championship event of the year took place once again at Stormont in Nothern Ireland. Following the departure of Pipe Major Gary Nimmo, the band were led onto the field by Pipe Sergeant Stephen Moore. Despite the disruption of the previous week, the band were present in strength, and were able to take to the competition field.
Unfortunately, the results were not as might have been hoped. Out of the thirteen bands in our qualifying heat, the band came last, scoring 11th and 13th in piping, 10th in drumming, and 11th for ensemble.
For the second time this year, the band were pleased to play for Princess Anne, as she was involved in naming a vessel for the Seagull Trust.
The band gathered at the Falkirk Wheel, and made ready to play. Fortunately, despite the heavy rains of the past week, and even of that morning, conditions were good. And so we were in good form for the Princess, playing as she arrived, then later as she rode the "Wooden Spoon Seagull" on the canal and then on the Wheel, and later for her departure.
Pipe Sergeant Stephen Moore, who was leading the band in the absence of the Pipe Major, was introduced to Her Royal Highness. She commented that it was good of the band to volunteer our time and efforts for the Seagull Trust.
More photos of this event can be seen in the Gallery section of the website.
The second major of the year took place in Annan. Fortunately, the threatened rain held off, and so although the arena was extremely muddy, we were able to play in the sun.
Unfortunately, we once again found that the result was not as we hoped: we were 15th overall, out of 17 bands in our grade, being scored as 7th and 16th in piping, 11th in drumming, and 14th in ensemble.
The band are now taking a two-week break from practices, before resuming to prepare for the Europeans.
Just a quick update about the first Major of the season...
Following our disappointment at Dunbar, the band regrouped for the Scottish Championships, our first major of the year. In the intervening week, we had had new chanters set up to try to improve the sound quality, while the glorious sunshine and relatively low winds suited us.
Unfortunately, the result did not go as we had hoped: we came 12th overall in our grade, scoring 14th and 18th in piping, 10th in drumming, and 6th in ensemble. We had felt that the performance was a significant improvement over the previous week, but there is clearly a lot of work still to do!
On Saturday, the band played their first competition of the season, at the Dunbar Highland Games. We were fortunate to enjoy a gloriously sunny day; unfortunately, the wind still gave the air a bit of a chill!
Spirits were high going into the competition, but unfortunately the performance did not quite live up to our hopes - a combination of nerves and adrenaline affected our preparations and hampered the eventual performance. We clearly have a lot of work still to do!
The results were not what we had hoped - the band came 10th overall (out of 12 bands present), scoring 11th and 10th for piping, and 10th for ensemble. A special "well done" must be given to the drum corps, however, who came 4th. Although disappointing, the result was not unexpected, and since we know we can play much better than we did, there remains reason to be optimistic for the season ahead.
Friday and Saturday night say the band making the long drive over the Gosford House in Longniddry, where we played corporate events for visiting tourist groups.
Despite very cold evenings the band played well, playing a short set of tunes for the guests. Our play was clearly well received - shouts of "Bravo!" followed us as we marched away.
These events will raise much-needed funds for the band, which should allow us to continue upgrading our uniforms. Meanwhile, the distances involved from Falkirk to Longniddry show, quite literally, the lengths to which the band are willing to go!
On the evening of Thursday the 12th of April, the band were delighted to play at the wedding of one of their own. Pipe Sergeant Stephen Moore was married to Susan. The band were asked to play for the arrival of the evening guests.
The evening reception took place at the Inchyra Grange hotel in Falkirk, and as the weather remained dry, the band were able to play outside, under the canopy at the entrance to the suite used. The band played a single 20-minute set, and were much admired by the guests present. In particular, Stephen's grandmother is a very keen fan of the bagpipes, and having travelled from England was very pleased to hear not only a single piper, but an entire band.
It is with a great deal of sadness that we must report the passing of Hugh Lindsay.
Hugh was one of the founding members of the band when it was reformed in 1980, and remained involved with the band right up to this year. He served in several roles on the committee, as Quartermaster and Treasurer, and later as Honorary President after he retired from active service. He attended practices as often as he was able, most recently only a few weeks ago.
Hugh always took great joy in the progress of the band, and delighted in its recent improvement under Gary Nimmo's leadership. He was especially honoured to learn that Gary had composed a tune especially for him. Sadly, Hugh was never to hear the band play that tune for him.
Hugh was a great servant to the band, but more importantly he was a deeply loved figure within the band. He will be sorely missed.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Hugh's family at this very difficult time.
On Saturday the band played at the Steeple in Falkirk town centre to raise some funds. We gathered in the early afternoon, and played three thirty-minute sets for the crowds. With the sun shining, there was something of a part atmosphere as crowds gathered to watch us play.
In all, we raised £428.67 for band funds, which will go towards paying our transport costs for the year to come. In addition, this allowed several of our younger members to play with the band, gaining experience at real-world events - practice can only take you so far!
There are now less than six weeks to go until our first competition of the season, the Dunbar Highland Games on the 12th of May. Preparations for the new season are proceeding apace, with both the pipers and the drummers working hard - after the relative disappointment of last year, we are all keen to put on the best showing possible this year!
Naturally, with so few practices remaining, and quite a lot of work still to do, both pipers and drummers are requested to attend as many practices as possible between now and the start of the season.
On the morning of the 27th of Feburary, the pipe band played for the opening of the new Tesco superstore in Camelon. This meant a very early morning for band members, some of whom looked more than a little shell-shocked by the experience!
The band played twice on the day, once just as the store was opened at 8am, and then again later when they paraded through the store itself.
With the dawn of 2012, the calendar of events for the competition season have been released. Check out the Calendar for details!
Two fund-raising events at M&S have brought in much needed funds for the band. Thanks to all those who attended. We're now looking forward to a year that promises plenty of hard work and challenge, but hopefully some further progress for the band.