Peebles, November 1st-3rd, 2013

The 30th anniversary was bound to produce a particularly impressive annual gathering, and so it proved to be. The weekend began with a concert in the Burgh Hall, whose rather spartan décor was transformed by Julian Goodacre’s installation of a domestic setting on the stage, complete with occasional table, lamp and Persian rug. With LBPS chairman Hamish Moore as master of ceremonies, the capacity audience enjoyed a succession of some of the leading figures in the bellows-piping revival, with the added bonus of the announcement of the prize-winners of the New Music com- petition followed by premiere performances of the winning compositions.

Ewan Duncan at the Friday Concert

Ewan Duncan at the Friday Concert

Saturdays proceedings, which were held in the ballroom of the Tontine Hotel, began with a brief talk from Pete Stewart about the research he and Keith Sanger have been doing into the history of piping in Peebles [see p. 21]. The fifty or so participants then divided into groups for morning sessions. Pete Stewart led a group exploring the Border tune ‘The Bonnie Miller’ while others joined Judy Barker and Annie Grace for a session on singing with pipes. Other options included a discussion on composition with competition- second-prize-winner Paul Roberts.
After coffee new sessions included one from Gary West on how he went about composing his prize-winning tune ‘The Jedburgh Ba’ Game’ and a playing session led by Finn Moore.
Throughout the morning Hamish Moore, Julian Goodacre and Richard Evans hosted a pipe-maintenance workshop and much fettling of reeds and tuning of chanters ensued.
The morning concluded with the LBPS Annual General Meeting. This year, in addition to the usual reports from chairman and treasurer summariz- ing the year’s activities and finances, the event saw the resignation of Jeannie Campbell, who had been on the committee since the very early days, 30 years of service, surely a record unlikely to be broken. Jeannie was presented with a bouquet of flowers, an honorary membership and the promise of a celebratory medal.

Members congratulate Jeannie Campbell on her retirement from the committee after 30 years service.

Freeland Barbour and The Occasionals play for The Dashing White Sergeant

Allan MacDonald and Griogair Labhruidh conclude Saturday’s recital

John Bushby engrossed in the sound recording of the recital

Judy Barker and Annie Grace lead a pipe and song session

Gary West performs his winning tune on Friday night

Judy and Annie during their Saturday afternoon recital

Julian Goodacre and Callum Armstrong at Friday night’s concert