July 31, 2012

Bridge of Allan rained out, scuttling ‘overseas’ bands¡¯ plans

The Bridge of Allan Highland Games announced today that it has decided to cancel its August 5, 2012, event, scuttling the strategic plans of several non-UK pipe bands that zeroes in on the contest as a strategic tune-up for the following Saturday’s World Pipe Band Championships.

The Bridge of Allan Highland Games is the latest UK contest to fall victim to this summer’s horrendous UK weather, which has consisted of all-time record-setting rain in May and June, and a July that is also threatening to shatter recorded moisture levels.

Non-UK Grade 1 bands that had planned to compete at Bridge of Allan included the 78th Fraser Highlanders, 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel), Alberta Caledonia and Oran Mor. As a result of bands choosing to compete in Scotland the week before the World’s, the North American Championships at Maxville, Ontario, on August 4th, will hold a Grade 1 competition with only three entries – City of Chicago, the Peel Regional Police and the Toronto Police – the fewest number of top-grade bands at the continental championship in more than a decade.

So far all indications are that the North Berwick Highland Games in North Berwick, Scotland, will go ahead on August 4th. The event also features a Grade 1 contest in which the bands listed above are entered, as well as Grade 2 non-UK bands City of Regina and St. Thomas Alumni.

Bridge of Allan is the biggest Scottish pipe band contest yet cancelled. The Stirling Highland Games in nearby Stirling, Scotland, also pulled the plug on their July event.

The World Pipe Band Championships are scheduled for Saturday, August 11th, at Glasgow Green in Glasgow, a park that rarely if ever sees events cancelled by wet conditions.




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