Banchory band’s plea for members

Banchoy and District Pipes and Drums on the march at last summer's Banchory Show
Banchoy and District Pipes and Drums on the march at last summer's Banchory Show

A long-established Deeside pipe band has launched an urgent appeal for members - amid fears it could fold.

Banchory and District Pipes and Drums’ membership has fallen and concerned officials have started a recruiting drive in a bid to secure its future.

Some of the band members on practice night

Some of the band members on practice night

The band recently lost its pipe major and drum major and is down to six pipers and a similar number of drummers.

Piper Don Black, 77, said: “We need to increase our playing strength and we hope it will be possible to interest some experienced pipers, or novice pipers.

“We have also started some beginners’ courses and we are hoping to attract youngsters from the cubs or the schools aged from about eight upwards.

“If we don’t get some new blood, I think we would go under. We have got all the gear and we have a good bit of money in the funds.

“We have enthusiasm and

energy - all we need are a few extra people.”

The Banchory band - in existence for around 30 years - is non-competitive these days and is a community group playing at local events.

Don, who has been playing with the band for six years, added: “We do it because we enjoy playing.

“Our sponsor is Jamie Burnett, who provides the tartan for our kilts, and Legion Scotland in Banchory who do a brilliant job of providing the premises for us.”

The band meets for practice every Wednesday from 7-9pm at the Ravenswood branch, with tutorial classes starting at 6.30.

Officials are seeking new leading members, additional instructors and would like to see numbers increase to a dozen pipers and the same number of drummers.

Piper Dave Cowie, 72, whose son Andy is acting pipe major, is an original band member.

He said: “I think if we started to get some of the younger ones in it would encourage others to come along.

“There are so many pipers in Banchory as well and it would be ideal if we were to hear from them.”

Ravenswood manager Trish Ewen said: “The band is for the community and is enjoyed by many people.

“It would be a shame if Banchory didn’t have a pipe band.”

Anyone interested in joining should call the Banchory Legion on 01330 822347 or email info@banchorylegion.com

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