Islay Pipe Band European Champions Grade 3B

Islay Pipe Band has been very busy in the last two weeks of July competing at Balloch on 18th July and at Inverclyde on 25th July. The minor competition at Balloch was in doubt as CalMac took our ferry away - there was no 7.00am sailing. So we phoned the organisers and they said they would put us on on last in Grade 3 - at about 3.30pm. To cut a long story short, we reached Balloch at 3.00pm. Pipe Major Morris went into overdrive and got us all 'singing'. We went on to play, came off, had a quick breather and then we were back on to play in Grade 2. As this was a minor competition you can play up a grade as well. The results were announced at 5.30pm so it was a quick day.... We were placed first in Grade 3 and second in Grade 2 so it was a happy bus that travelled back to Glasgow. The band congregated in the 'Islay Inn' where there were a few 'Islay Airs' and even some Irish dancing!

Islay Pipe Band are European Champions again despite being moved up to Grade 3B

This was to prove a great warm up for the European Championships which were being held in Greenock on 25th July. Not such a rush this time as we were away on the Friday. It was a beautiful day and the setting at battery Park was just perfect. We were on sixth out of the sixteen bands in Grade 3B. Once again the sun shone on us as we are now Grade 3B European Champions - what an achievement! We would like to thank everyone for their support, financially and otherwise as we couldn't do it without you. Our next competition is the World Championship in August when there will be 27 bands in our grade which will be a huge challenge. Andrew McEachern

This story was published with kind permission of the Ileach local newspaper.

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