October 13, 2014

World’s format to stay the same for 2015

The set-up for the 2015 World Pipe Band Championships will repeat that of 2014, with the Grade 1 qualifying competitions held on Friday and all other qualifiers and finals on Saturday.

According to the organization, the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association conducted a review of the 2014 format and concluded that it should remain the same, requiring all Grade 1 bands on Friday to compete in both a Medley and March, Strathspey & Reel event, with bands split into two qualifying section, and six finalists from each section moving on to compete in the 12-band Grade 1 Final of Saturday.

The 2015 World’s will be held on August 14th and 15th at Glasgow Green in Glasgow.

The August 2014 contest was the first time that the competition held events on the Friday. The previous year the World’s was held in a Saturday-Sunday format.

Competing on a Sunday was unpopular with bands travelling from abroad as it forced working pipers and drummers to add an additional day of vacation time to their World’s trip. The Sunday schedule also went against the religious beliefs of some pipers and drummers.

Inveraray & District competing in the main arena on the Saturday of the 2014 World Pipe Band Championships.

The Saturday at the 2014 World Championships saw the Grade 1 Final complete by 3pm, leaving a considerable break between it and the closing ceremonies, providing time enough to hold the Grade 2 Final in the main arena before a mostly empty grandstand.

The use of the Friday caused some disruption to the massive Piping Live! Glasgow International Festival of Piping, with a noticeable decline in momentum during the week due to Grade 1 pipers and drummers using the Thursday to focus on the Friday qualifier.

Some attending the 2014 World’s remarked that the contest should simply revert back to a one-day competition in which all Grade 1 bands compete in both the MSR and Medley, saying that the qualifier and final format is unnecessary.

pipes|drums created a popular video from last year’s competition, 2014 World Pipe Band Championships Sights & Sounds, which works to capture the essence of the two-day event.


  1. The mind boggles! Absolutely everyone I spoke to around the park at this years Worlds thought the Friday was a monumental waste of time. There’s no reason why the competition that was run on the Friday this year couldn’t just be “The Grade 1 World Pipe Band Competition” except held on the Saturday – period.

    The result would most likely not change, all the bands get to play in the “Worlds” – and its’ all done in one day – what’s so complicated about that?

    And then don’t get me started on that completely unnecessary and unceremonious gathering of bands on the Friday afternoon to learn if your name is NOT on the list of bands read out. Could they have come up with a more demoralizing way to treat bands and their members? Who thought this stuff up? It definitely can’t be bands people.

    The RSPBA needs to get a grip!

  2. Someone explain to me how they need to cull down the 25 “best” bands in the world but have no problem with the 80+ grade 4 bands (4a, 4b) ?



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