Fredericton applies to return to Grade 2
After a year in Grade 1, the Fredericton Society of St. Andrew Pipe Band has formally asked the Atlantic Pipe Band Association (ACPBA) to assign it to Grade 2. In a statement to pipes|drums, the band cited “recent personnel changes” has the reason for the request.
According to the band, the decision to request a downgrade was made unanimously at a meeting of band members on January 9th.
The band recently changed pipe-majors, with Gord Perry taking over from long-time leader Derick Wilson, who subsequently joined the Grade 1 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel). This week, Leading-Drummer Matt Carter also left the band, with an apparent aim of also joining the 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel).
The band also announced that Justin Gallant will step in to the Leading-Drummer role, with assistance from Dave Coleman, who has re-joined the band.
“This is a band with 80 years of history and 30 years of success at the line,” Perry said. “The band has weathered many storms such as these in its history and has a tradition of determination. We’ve had a taste of what it means to be in Grade 1. When we return to the Grade 1 circle we’ll be ready as an organization.”
Band president and Pipe-Sergeant Chris Gallant commented on the strength of the band’s youth program as a reason that the band will thrive again. “We still have a strong core of very talented musicians who have every intention of putting out a very solid Grade 2 band. Our sights are set on returning to the Grade 1 circle,” Gallant said.
At publication time, the ACPBA had not yet commented on when an official decision would be made on the band’s application to return to Grade 2.
With the recent spate questionable upgradings to G1, how ofen are we going to see this story repeated in the near future?
While FM does have a concern, the other side is valid as well. How many upgrades will be held back siting this as an example of why a band has to be the top of the new grade before being upgraded. It is sad to hear of things like this but really where is the problem? The important thing is that every body play in appropriate grades for the year they are competitng. personel changes will affect which grade a band will play in. That may change from year to year. so be it.
A humble and corageous decision. It would be great if a few more bands currently graded ‘1’ by whatever association had a reality check, I mean, are there really 39 Grade 1 bands on the blue ball? Gimme a break! Long live Fredericton, lookin forward to hearin the juniors.