Israel’s Sons of Holyland & District granted special dispensation to compete at World’s
Following considerable outcry from the piping and drumming world after it came to light that the Grade 4B Sons of Holyland & District of Israel was unsuccessful with their entry to the 2022 World Pipe Band Championships, the RSPBA held a “specially convened” meeting of its board of directors and agreed to “allow” the band to compete.
According to an RSPBA statement written by interim Executive Officer Colin Mulhern, the association reviewed the paperwork and decided that the band “showed intent and could see why the Band Secretary believed they had a valid entry to the World Championships.”
The globe’s most powerful pipe band organization was clear to absolve itself of any blame, saying, “The board of directors also acknowledged that the resulting situation was not a consequence of any administrative error of the association’s members of staff.”
At publication time, the RSPBA had not responded after four days to a request from pipes|drums for comment.
The RSPBA in the past has taken a hard line when it comes to entry SNAFUs. In 1991, the association denied the Grade 2 Glengarry Pipe Band of Ontario its entry to the World’s. Having already paid travel and most accommodation costs, the band elected to attend anyway. Glengarry members managed to get on the commercial recording of the contest, famously shouting “Ach, aye!” between Grade 1 Simon Fraser University’s introductory rolls.
With the addition of Sons of Holyland & District, a total of 146 bands are now entered for the August 12-13 competitions, a 25% decline in entries compared with 2019, the last time the event was staged.