January 31, 2010

Strathclyde Police officially a go for 2010; Bradford reinstated

The Strathclyde Police Pipe Band was saved from the brink of dissolution this week after a meeting on January 19th and another on January 21st with the inspector and sergeant and the members of the band who also serve in the police force.

The voting members of the band reconvened on January 21st to determine leadership. Don Bradford returns as pipe-major, Duncan Nicholson as pipe-sergeant, and Eric Ward reinstated as lead-drummer.

Bradford, a serving police officer, had resigned, along with Pipe-Sergeant Duncan Nicholson, in October 2009, in frustration over the treatment of the band under the direction of the former Divisional Commander, who later resigned. The three reinstated leaders were unopposed.

The band has been approved to compete without issue at the five major championships in 2010, as well as any other events, provided “operational commitments” allow it.

Confirmed at the January 19th meeting was that the police officers within the band will be part of a new “flexi unit” along with other non-playing police officers. A document was produced at the meeting as a result of the police board meeting held On December 11, 2009, which stated that the band would compete at the five RSPBA major championships and any other events as decided by the divisional commander.

However, according to sources familiar with the matter, “No standard operating procedure was implemented, which would guarantee the band’s future for a period of years. Instead, all that is confirmed is the band is safe while the current divisional commander is in place and, therefore, no guarantees after this.”

It could be as late as March when shift systems are in place for the new unit, mainly because it has not been decided what the sort of police work the flexi unit will do, sources said.

Financing of the band for the year was reportedly set at between £10,000 and £20,000. Future years, according to an insider, are “unknown at present.”

According to sources, there are approximately eight serving officers with the band who work at the Stewart Street office. “It is not confirmed that all of them will stay with the band,” the source said, “and it is believed that at least one will not stay for the new season.”


  1. Pipertim. We are not talking about any old band here but about the oldest established civilian band outwith the British military. There were never any complaints from players about travelling to competitions. There were complaints about pre-arranged transport being cancelled without their knowledge. John Stormy” Winter

  2. Bravo! Great outcome. It’s a sign of the times when so much history and tradition can almost be wiped out with one quick blow from a couple of selfish and ignorant idiots, and yet it can take so much longer to apply some common sense to restore the situation to the perfectly manageable one that it once was. What is the world coming to? If the ‘economic rationalists’ keep this sort of rubbish up, we’ll outsource life on earth to an alien species for fear of incurring any further costs! I trust these two clowns are now on barker’s egg duties in the rough end of town!

  3. just hope the funding keeps coming and they don’t get left high and dry! Congrats to Don bradford and all those who stuck through the thick and thin!

  4. Am I the only one who is getting tired of this whole issue? Sure there is a lot of history there, however, it wouldn’t be a bad thing if they had to do it like every other band in the world, with a few exceptions of course. They complain because there is no funding for them to travel an hour or two away to a contest. In the summer, I foot the bill to travel 6 hours every week to compete with a high level band, and I am not complaining. Can we please find another story?

  5. Pipertim – like any other story on this or any other site, you can choose to not read the story if it’s not of interest to you. I, for one, was interested in the story. It’s better to have content that people can choose from than to not have any content at all.

  6. Pipertim, its a tedious story indeed but its not due to the band members, you must understand. Travel expense or whatever you refer to never was compensated so I don’t know your source but its misinformed. This is not a money issue, This is hierarchy who don’t give a **** about pipebands or heritage. They tried to kill the band but didn’t reckon on the level of or other sh*t was a smokescreen…thats a fact.

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