They’re a self-described “project band” comprising students and available players from various bands that Pipe-Major David Ogilvie teaches, and they never really expected to win the first competition they entered, so when the West Coast Highlanders of Scotland won Grade 4B at the 2013 World Pipe Band Championships, it was all just icing on the cake.
Members of the band met and decided that there was only one thing to do: give their £1,000 prize money to charity – specifically, the Bone Cancer Research Trust, the cause backed and made popular throughout the pipe band world by bone cancer survivor Fiona Morris, a tenor drummer with the Grade 1 Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia.
The band worked with the RSPBA to have the cheque re-issued so that it could be presented to Morris at the Cowal Gathering.
The morning after the World’s Morris received a call from Ogilvie saying that they had a trophy, and each member of the band had a medal and they were just exceptionally happy they won, and that was enough for them.
“They had a band meeting and it was unanimously decided that the £1,000 prize money should be donated to me for the Bone Cancer Research Trust,” Morris said. “Considering the band members forked out large sums of money to pay for flights and accommodation to compete, this is extremely generous.”
In May of this year Fiona Morris set up a fundraising page with an objective to raise £500 for her charity. To date, Morris has accumulated £10,521, or 2104% more than her goal, mainly from donations from the piping and drumming world, including pipes|drums Magazine, which contributed £200 to the cause.