200 bands to appear at Glasgow World Pipe Band Championships

The World Pipe band Championships will be held in Glasgow in August for the 31st consecutive year. Picture: Robert Perry
The World Pipe band Championships will be held in Glasgow in August for the 31st consecutive year. Picture: Robert Perry
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More than 200 pipe bands from around the world will compete at this year’s World Pipe Band Championships.

With the event celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2017, 219 bands from 15 countries - including the USA, Australia, Switzerland and Argentina - will come together for the two-day competition at Glasgow Green later this summer.

Held on August 11 and 12, the event is organised by the City of Glasgow, on behalf of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association (RSPBA).

Around 8,000 pipers and drummers are set to descend on the city in the 31st consecutive year that Glasgow has hosted the ‘Worlds’.

The maiden competition was held at Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh in 1947, with Glasgow hosting the event the following year.

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Members of current champions, Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band, pictured in George Square. Picture: Robert Perry

Members of current champions, Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band, pictured in George Square. Picture: Robert Perry

Eleven-time world champions the Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band, hailing from Lisburn in Northern Ireland, will be returning to Scotland to defend their title.

Along with their 11 world titles the band, led by Pipe Major Richard Parkes MBE, has won 15 Scottish titles, 12 British titles, 12 European titles and 25 Ulster titles.

Ian Embelton, Chief Executive of the RSPBA, said: “Planning for the World Pipe Band Championships is a year-round task for the event organisers and the bands who want to compete.

“We will be welcoming bands from all round the world who want to test themselves against their peers in pursuit of the title of World Champions.

A band competes at the 2013 Worlds at Glasgow Green. Picture: Robert Perry / TSPL

A band competes at the 2013 Worlds at Glasgow Green. Picture: Robert Perry / TSPL

“Each band will already be rehearsing hard in pursuit of a performance at Glasgow Green which is as close to perfection as they can get so we are already anticipating two days of fierce competition to mark the 70th anniversary of this event.”

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As well as the piping competition, the event is a draw for fans of Scottish food and drink, Highland Games and Highland Dancing.

Paul Bush, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, added: “The World Pipe Band Championships are a wonderful spectacle, attracting the best pipers and drummers from around the world, and EventScotland is delighted to be continuing its long-standing support of the event.

“Scotland is the perfect stage for piping events given their central role in our culture and it is wonderful to be celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Worlds in Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.”

• Tickets and more information can be found on theworlds.co.uk