Match report Tuesday 10th January 2017

img_4391Salutations and compliments of the season to all.

Santa’s sacks are empty and everyone is looking to get back into the swing of things. Some waddling to the gym, some looking for the magic diet and detox plan but the hardy few  will keep going until Rabbie’s birthday comes along. You know who you are.

Some have even dusted off the cobwebs from the great Highland bagpipe and are in fine early season form.


The Guards Club needs you

img_4382The New Year has seen the Eagles introduce a new format with communal playing between 8pm and 9pm and then a few solo tunes after the pie break. Craig Robertson, the incumbent secretary, has taken on the task of pulling together a small book of tunes that will be circulated to members in a few weeks.

img_4379So who would turn up and break the ice and take the plunge? Quite a few actually and at one stage we had 17; yes 17 pipers on the floor. With no chanter setting, minimal drone tuning and a few different settings here and there it was a recipe for disaster, but all in all it was really quite good. More importantly it was good fun. Although not everyone thought the tone was spot on…..


Amara Taylor (Heriots girl) aged  9 was not so impressed apparently

After a blast through some old standards the band took a well-earned pie break and had a light refreshment.

The post pie piper was none other than Kenny McBride. As you will all know Kenny is an ex Pipe Major of Lothian and Borders Police and finished his band career with Shotts and Dykehead. Recently retired from the police Kenny is obviously spending a bit of time on the pipe as he gave us a splendid selection of light music.


John casting an eye over Kenny

Another retired policeman John Fraser took to the floor next and once again John was not to disappoint. John has a vast repertoire of tunes and he concluded his set with a reel, Sandy Strafed the Germans’. Strafed meaning to pepper with bullets.


John strafing the audience with music

A WW1 composition it can be found in Logan’s collection by Percy W Scott.  ‘Gott strafe England’ (May God punish England) was a German saying from the war.

The final player of the night was newcomer and yet another retired police officer, George Campbell. With all the retired officers on board the Pipe Major was feeling at home and no longer the only old pensioner at the bar! George, a former player with Boghall and Bathgate, didn’t hang about and he went straight into the big stuff with some competition march, strathspeys and reels. Great stuff.


George Campbell

What a start to the year. It was fantastic to see so many come along with pipes and a real bonus to have the retired Police Scotland boys join the fold.

The Wheel of Fortune Competition is on Saturday 11th February in the Danderhall Miners Welfare Club and our own Jenny Hazzard is one of the contestants.

The next Eagles meeting will be on Tuesday 24th where the bands first 2 tunes will be the 6/8s,The Glendaruel Highlanders and Dovecot Park. Who knows what will follow but the evening may have a Burns flavor?

img_4380Come along and bring your pipes. You don’t have to be a member but you might have to buy a drink!

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

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2017 New Year Meeting

Our first meeting of 2017 is on Tuesday 10th January.

Bring your pipes – it will be the first our new band sessions.


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Match Report Tuesday 6th December 2016

unknownThe last meeting of the year involved plenty of chat and festive cheer. It was half 9 before we realised that a tune was required. Up to the plate stepped Peter McCalister and after a few light music tunes he presented and played the little heard War or Peace, Cogadh Na Sith.img_4247

Note-This is ancient piobaireachd is a tune played on the eve of a battle to rouse clansmen to a high emotional state, or, in battle. It was also once commonly known as “The True Gathering of the Clans”.

At the Battle of Saint Pierre in 1813, a piper of the Gordon’s played Cogadh no Sith and was killed as he played. A second piper took up the tune and was also killed. A third piper completed the tune.

img_4243Probably the best known playing of Cogadh no Sìth was at the Battle of Waterloo when Piper Kenneth MacKay of Tongue played the tune.

Kenneth MacKay was a piper with the 79th Cameron Highlanders. As his regiment was forming a square to defend themselves against the charging French Cuirassiers, the proudest cavalry of its day, Kenneth MacKay stepped outside the square and took up his pipe to play Cogadh no Sith. Ouitside the square he marched despite the repeated charges of the French cavalry, all the while playing Cogadh no Sìth.img_4250

The square held firm despite heavy casualties – over 300 officers and men killed or wounded. Kenneth MacKay by some miracle was unharmed. The Cameron Highlanders were singled out for special mention by the Duke of Wellington. When representatives of the regiment were invited to Paris to appear before the royalty of Europe, Kenneth MacKay played Cogadh no Sìth for the Tsar of Russia.

He was later presented with a set of silver mounted pipes donated by Britain’s Prince Regent.

Now that all said, as most of you will know, the picture of MacKay depicts him playing an F. There are none in the tune?

Anyway once again great stuff from Peter and a very fitting way to conclude the year that saw some 15 piobaireachds aired.


The family will eat at Christmas

The next meeting will be on Tuesday 10th January 2017 where the new band format will commence, so everyone please bring your pipes. The Society is putting together a new member tune book that hopefully will be available early next year.

So all in all another great piping year has come to an end with fond memories of fun and frolic’s. After all that’s what it’s all about, is it not?

Compliments of the season to you and yours.bagpipe-santa

Euan Anderson

Hon. P/M

The Eagle Pipers’ Society

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Christmas Dates


There will be no further meetings until we re-start on 10th January 2017 continuing fortnightly thereafter.

All our meetings will now include a band session so please bring your pipes every night.  We will be issuing a Society repertoire which will include some superb but lesser known tunes.

We have exciting plans for some special events in 2017.  More details to follow.

Minutes of the AGM last month are available upon request to me.

Douglas Gardiner

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Eagle Pipers AGM 22nd November 2016

P1010483Despite phase 2 of the Society being in existence for some 6 years the first AGM was held last week.

Now there has been the odd committee meeting, where the piping world was put to rights, but due to the large amount of gin consumed, all the productive decisions were forgotten by the following morning. While this informal approach was well received by the committee, it was decided that a bit more structure was required, to see where the Society is at and what the future holds.

In brief the Society is to continue in its current form with fortnightly meetings (every second Tuesday) in the Scots Guards Association Club in Edinburgh with the evenings being run by the Hon. Pipe Major. There will be more communal piping, with perhaps the pre pie slot being dedicated to members and guests playing as a band.

There was discussion about resurrecting the famous March Strathspey and Reel/Hornpipe and Jig competition, for premier competitors, that was such a huge success in days gone by. A sub committee will look at options with a view to the possibility of linking the event into the fringe festival.

Membership and payment options are to be revised.

Full minutes of the meeting will be available from Douglas Gardiner in due course but the office bearers and committee going forward into 2017 are:

Hon. President                       Colin MacLellan

Secretary                                Craig Robertson

Treasurer                               Iain Speirs        

Communications Sec.            Douglas Gardiner

Hon Pipe Major                     Euan Anderson


Jenny Hazzard             

Peter McCalister          

Cameron Drummond 


The Eagle Pipers’ Society


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AGM -Tuesday 22nd November 2016

We are holding our AGM before the usual meeting on 22nd November at 2000hrs.

The Agenda is as follows:

  1. Welcome & Apologies
  2. Hon. Chairman Report
  3. Financial Statement
  4. Invitation for Members’ views on the future direction of the Society.
  5. Election of Officers
  6. A.O.C.B.

Please come along and add your thoughts.

Douglas Gardiner


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Match report Tuesday 11th October 2016


Portrait of Pipe Major George Stoddart that hangs in the Army School of Pipes and Drums

On a wet night that saw Scotland go down 3-0 to Slovakia, it was difficult to muster patriotic enthusiasm and knock out some rousing tunes, but none the less the show must go on. (Wembley next, by the way!).

The P/M got the show on the road with some family favourites before handing the baton to welcome guest Iain MacDonald, who had brought along an old friend from Rothesay, Sandy Calder. Sandy was in the 1st Royal Scotts between 1948 -50 where he made the acquaintance of Rab Gibson (Rab’s Wedding) who would later play with the Edinburgh City Police. So there was plenty of old piping chat to be had. On a lovely set of old ebony Glens Iain started off with the 6/8 march The Hill of Cherat, composed by W J Campbell that can be found in Donald MacLeod’s book 1.


The Hills of Cherat

‘During British rule Cherat was important as a hill cantonment and sanitarium for British troops in the Peshawar District of British India. Cherat was first used as a sanitarium for troops in 1861 and was used during the hot weather as a health station for the British troops who were quartered in the hot and valley of Peshawar.’ 



Iain finished off with some fine small strathspeys and reels before sitting down to a well-earned pie and a pint.

The PPP was Gordon Hislop who. once he had played a few tunes and settled the pipe. gave us a melodic MacCrimmons Sweetheart.



Fergus Perks was up next and there was no warming up of the pipe to be had. Straight into the big stuff opening with the lovely Maclean of Pennycross, followed by a couple of strathspeys and reels.



The final player of the night was Jenny Hazzard who was fresh from the John MacLellan Memorial competition last weekend. On a sonorous pipe Jenny was quickly into her stride rounding off a lovely wee night-despite the football result. The photograph below, taken during a first class hornpipe and Jig competition, shows Jenny playing the same instrument the Captain is playing in the background display.img_3995

The next meeting will be on Tuesday 25th October KO 20.00hrs

The AGM will be on Tuesday 22nd November. Details to follow in due course.

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

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