Piping school success in Strachur

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The Cowal hills were alive with the sound of piping.

The 41st annual Strachur and District Piping Association summer piping school drew almost 50 pupils from across Argyll and Bute, with a large contingent from Mid Argyll.

Held over five days from Monday July 1, the piping school was hailed as a big success, with skilled tutors running classes from beginners’ chanter to advanced junior piping level.

As the week drew to a close, the curtain was brought down by the traditional Friday night recital in Strachur Memorial Hall, where family and friends gathered to hear the result of the young players’ hard work – ending with a rousing rendition of I See Mull and Scotland the Brave played by the ‘massed bands’ of pupils and tutors.

A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Niall Campbell Memorial Trophy to Ryan Logan from Ardrishaig. The trophy, in memory of the late Pipe Major Niall Campbell of Strachur who was a stalwart of Argyll piping for decades, recognises the player who demonstrates the most improvement over the week of the piping school.

The trophy was presented by ‘Mr Niall’s’ grandson Jamie Campbell, himself an accomplished piper.

Holding the Friday evening concert together with his usual dry wit and easy manner was Fear an Tighe John Kelly from Dunoon.

Strachur and District Piping Association chairman Colin Stevenson thanked John as well as all the volunteers, tutors and supporters, adding a special thanks to the parents and others who support the budding pipers and who came to enjoy the concert.

He added: ‘It is great to once again have children attending from Dunoon, Mid Argyll, Bute and further afield. The level of skill of these young players just goes up year after year.’