RSPBA moves Stuart Highlanders to Grade 1; still in Grade 2 with EUSPBA
RSPBA, and that the RSPBA said that the band was regraded due to the influx of Grade 1 band players.
It is not known if RSPBA-member Grade 2 objected to Stuart Highlanders’ Grade 2 status following its Oran Mor merger, but another source said that “the RSPBA received a complaint after that announcement and decided to regrade after reviewing their current roster and comparing it to Oran Mor’s last roster.”
some years ago agreed in 2005 at an ANAPBA summit meeting that it would cease the practice of regrading bands from other associations and adhere to grading reciprocity. The organization has regraded several bands that entered the World Pipe Band Championships in their home association grade, only to be moved after entering. The RSPBA rejected the San Francisco-based Prince Charles Pipe Band Grade 1 entry in 2001, Oran Mor’s entry to Grade 1 in 2008, and City of Washington’s application for Grade 1 in 2010, each band subsequently competing in Grade 2.
The Robert Malcolm Memorial Grade 2 band was upgraded to Grade 1 by the RSPBA following the band’s success at the 2006 World Championships. The band subsequently disintegrated, with most of the members joining the then-Grade 3 Triumph Street Pipe Band, catapulting it to Grade 1 within two years.
“Any such agreement like [grading reciprocity] was way before I was involved with the EUSPBA in any official capacity, so I can’t speak confidently on that,” MacNeill said. “I think the EUSPBA certainly has the ability to set its own standards and grading. I’m quite pleased that I feel this has continued to improve locally and become more in-line with a ‘world standard’ grading. We have had bands at all grade levels competing successfully aboard in recent years. However, at the same time, I think that bands and solo players have to be aware when they travel abroad that they must be prepared to play by the standards, rules, and regulations of the association they are traveling to.”
RSPBA Executive Officer Ian Embelton had not responded to pipes|drums’ request for comment at publication time.