More about Stow Pipe Band

There has ‘aye been’ a pipe band in Stow, although the modern day band was formed around 1953 by the village policeman Bob Milne. Prior to this there was actually a Boys Brigade and Girls Guildry Pipe Band in the village, set up in the late 1940’s by the then by Rev James Waugh, Parish Minister of Stow.

The band is based in the village with members of the band coming from Stow, Galashiels, Lauder, Melrose, Lilliesleaf, Edinburgh, Selkirk and St Boswells. The band plays regularly at many prestigious events all over Scotland including local 'Common Ridings', Highland Games, Concerts, festivals as well as competing at famous events such as Cowal Games, Scottish Championships and The World Pipe Band Championships.

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The band wears the Cameron of Erracht tartan. In the 1950’s, Major A. Todd of the Cameron Highlanders, who lived nearby in Bowland, took an interest in the band and managed to obtain some old army kilts for use by the band. The band still wears the same tartan today and is one of the few bands in the world using the traditional military setting rather than the modern version.

 

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Stow Pipe Band entered the 2003 Scottish Pipe Band Championships ‘for a day oot’ to celebrate the bands 50th anniversary. However, by the end of the day the band was celebrating being the Grade 4B Scottish Champions taking first prize for Pipe Band and also first for best drum corps. By the end of 2003 the band had also won the European Championships, 2nd place at Cowal Games and qualified for the finals of the World Championships. The band was subsequently promoted to Grade 4A. The band regularly competes at competitions around Scotland and Ireland.

The band has played at festivals recently in Spain, Italy, The Basque Country and France. Stow Pipe Band has also played for Clients in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Dubai and Hong Kong.

The band is especially well known in the Basque Region of Northern Spain having played at the Getxo International Folk Festival in 2000, 2001 and 2006. As well as playing on stage at the festival, the band played at the world famous Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, the Basque Parliament in Vitoria-Gasteiz and along the top of the 100 feet high transporter bridge in Getxo.

The current Pipe Major is Stuart Robinson who succeeded the long time Pipe Major Archie Anderson. Archie Anderson led the band for over 25 years and taught many of the present day players. The Lead Drummer is Kevin McDonald who is also a long time member of Stow Pipe Band. The band still teaches pipes and drums at weekly classes to ensure that the village has a pipe band in the years to come.