Published: August 31, 2006

Dawes resigns as Lothian & Borders Police P-M

Immediately after the Cowal Championship, Keith Dawes resigned as pipe-major of the Grade 1 Lothian & Borders Police Pipe Band. Dawes had held the post for two years.

The band, one of the oldest and most famous in history, finished at or near the bottom of the Grade 1 lists at most major championships this year, and its status in the grade for 2007 has been a subject of discussion in unofficial pipe band circles. A ninth-equal finish in the Grade 1 qualifier at the World Pipe Band Championship was the band’s best showing in a 2006 major, and could keep the band from being relegated.

Dawes, a member of the Lothian & Borders Police force, took over from Colin MacLellan in 2004 after MacLellan had returned the band to Grade 1 status. In 2004 there were a number of applicants for the pipe-major post, allegedly including a few very prominent names.

“Lothian & Borders Police is grateful to Keith for all his time and effort over that period,” said John Rae, band secretary and a Chief Inspector with the force. “As Edinburgh’s only Grade 1 band, the vacant position must surely offer a hugely exciting opportunity for the right person to take over the reins. That person does not need to be a police officer – Colin MacLellan held the post for five years.”

Rae invited interested parties to contact him directly at pipe.band@lbp.pnn.police.uk or by phone at 07831 426 757.

“The platform is there for someone with the ability and ambition to step forward and take this band from the lower reaches of Grade 1 to a position where we are once more competing for success at the highest level. That is where we want to be,” Rae continued.

Originating as the Edinburgh City Police Pipe Band in 1888. Its most famous years were in the 1960 and ’70s when it won five World Championships under Pipe-Major Iain McLeod. Other famous pipe-majors of the band have included Donald Shaw-Ramsay, John D. Burgess, Harry McNulty and George Lumsden.

The resignation of Dawes is the first of what are usually many significant personnel moves after Cowal.

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