THE Maclean Highland Gathering is as Scottish an event you can find in Australia, so for a pipe band to claim a prize there is considered quite prestigious.
The Bellinger River District Pipe Band recently competed at the 112th Maclean Highland Gathering. The wee township of Maclean came to life for the annual gathering, which features an array of pipe band and highland dancing contests, traditional highland games, and the massed bands finale.
This year was more memorable for the band than previous years, as in addition to placing second in the Grade 4 Contest, the band was awarded the W & M McGrath Memorial Trophy for Best Pipe Band Ensemble in Grade 4.
The McGraths were long-time supporters of the pipe band, with three sons having been with the band since its beginning in 1976.
“It was especially touching to be presented with this trophy,” pipe major Rod McGrath said.
“We are extremely honoured to have won it this year, and then to also place second, just missing out by a few points to a band from Brisbane, was a testament to the hard work and dedication of the players, who travelled from as far as Sydney, Newcastle, Armidale and Brisbane to make this all possible.”
The pipe band is now looking at competing in the Australian Pipe Band Championships to be held in Sydney in November.
For information on the pipe band or its folk group, phone Rod McGrath on 6655 1058.