Pipers gather for World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow

Picture: John Devlin
Picture: John Devlin
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More than 8,000 pipers and drummers have gathered in Glasgow to mark the 70th anniversary of the World Pipe Band Championships.

The weekend event will see almost 220 bands from the UK and countries including the US, France, Australia, Denmark and Argentina compete to be named the best in the world on Glasgow Green.

Picture: John Devlin

Picture: John Devlin

The first ever World Pipe Band Championships were held at Murrayfield in Edinburgh in 1947, but they have been staged in Glasgow continuously since 1986.

Last year, Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band from Northern Ireland were crowned world champions, having previously won the title four years in a row between 2011 and 2014.

The championships are one part of the larger Piping Live! festival with hundreds of events around Glasgow.

This year, the Chieftain for the event is Glasgow’s new Lord Provost, Eva Bolander.

She said: “My first experience of Glasgow more than 30 years ago was as a piper in a band that travelled from Sweden for the event.

“To be asked to be chieftain is a special honour.

“I am really looking forward to outstanding performances from the best bands in the world, and enjoying the unique atmosphere of Glasgow Green.”

Ian Embelton, chief executive of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, said: “At the heart of the World Pipe Band Championships are brilliant musicians seeking to prove they are the best of the best.

“Planning for the event itself is a year-round process, but getting ready to compete is a life-long pursuit of excellence coupled with months of rehearsal.

“For any band to win the world title is a huge achievement and to watch them all compete is a real pleasure.”