At the beginning of 2011, a number of dedicated pipers and drummers in the various local pipe bands decided that it was time for a truly competitive pipe band in the Borders.
So they came together, putting aside local rivalries, to form what is now known as the Scottish Borders Pipe Band.
In this their inaugural year of competition, they have taken first place in their particular grade in the Scottish, third in the British and, in Glasgow on Saturday, first in the World Pipe Band Championships, as well as several local championships. This is a truly remarkable achievement for such a newly-formed pipe band.
We moved to Galashiels in April 2000 and in August that year our seven-year-old granddaughter sat on the kerb at the street parade following the Melrose Pipe Band Championships and declared that she wanted to play in a pipe band. The following year our daughter and family moved to join us in Galashiels and our granddaughter immediately set about joining the local pipe band. After realising that she didn’t have the puff, she took up learning to play the side drum.
Now, 10 years later, she is an enthusiastic member of this new and exciting competition pipe band. She and the other members of the band continue to support their original individual pipe bands, especially during the recent common ridings throughout the Borders, while still finding time to practice for these competitions of an evening, often travelling right across the region to different practice venues.
Well done to the Scottish Borders Pipe Band, which deserves our wholehearted support.
Keith and Valerie Baker