Published: November 30, 2000

Duncan Resigns Vale P/M Post For Good

Ian Duncan, who earlier in the month made it clear that he would take a leave of absence from leading the MacNaughton’s Vale of Atholl Pipe Band of Pitlochry, Scotland, has informed Piper & Drummer Online that he will resign from the band permanently, after a commitment to the band of 36 years, 26 as Pipe Major.

Duncan informed Vale band members of his resignation on November 23, and it is expected that an extraordinary general meeting will be called to select the new Pipe Major.

“I have had long break since end of season,” Duncan said. “I told the band members today that I’m not going back. I’m back to full health and want to stay that way. I’m also enjoying being with family and seeing my two six year-olds growing up. I’ve had a good innings.”

With “The Vale,” Duncan enjoyed numerous achievements. In 1977 the band finished last in Grade 4, but by 1988 they were Grade 1 European Champions. Under Ian Duncan’s watch, the band became known worldwide for its concert performances and its adventurous and assertive musical style.

Said one pipe band insider, “Love them or hate them, the Vale was probably the most distinctive and progressive band Scotland has yet produced. For over 15 years they have been Scotland’s answer to the 78th Fraser Highlanders.”

“I will miss the band and the fine people in it, and will continue to be their number one non-playing supporter,” Duncan added.

It is thought that long-time Vale piper Andy Renwick could well be appointed the band’s next Pipe Major.

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