Excitement building ahead of Mid-Ulster Pipe Band Championships

Pictured at the official launch for the 2016 Mid-Ulster Championships, are, from left: Alan Ferguson, pipe major of Matt Boyd Memorial, who will be competing in the contest; Trevor Wilson, chairman, Mid-Ulster Section; Tanya Thom, Royal Hotel, the venue for all Mid-Ulster Section functions; Desmond McLaughlin, secretary, Mid-Ulster Section; Frances Burton, chair, development committee, Mid-Ulster District Council and Sam Glasgow M.B.E., president, Mid-Ulster Section.
Pictured at the official launch for the 2016 Mid-Ulster Championships, are, from left: Alan Ferguson, pipe major of Matt Boyd Memorial, who will be competing in the contest; Trevor Wilson, chairman, Mid-Ulster Section; Tanya Thom, Royal Hotel, the venue for all Mid-Ulster Section functions; Desmond McLaughlin, secretary, Mid-Ulster Section; Frances Burton, chair, development committee, Mid-Ulster District Council and Sam Glasgow M.B.E., president, Mid-Ulster Section.

The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Northern Ireland Branch Mid-Ulster Section has held the official launch event recently for the 2016 Mid-Ulster Championships for pipe bands and drum majors.

The launch was held in The Burnavon Arts and Cultural Centre in Cookstown, with the following eleven people present for the occasion: Sam Glasgow M.B.E., Norman Bell, Alex Crooks, Trevor Wilson, Lowry Ferguson, Desmond McLaughlin, Alan Ferguson, Frances Burton, Graham Montgomery, Tanya Thom and Ray Hall.

Attending the contest launch, are: Sam Glasgow M.B.E., president, Mid-Ulster Section (right), Norman Bell (left) and Alex Crooks, vice-presidents of the Mid-Ulster Section.

Attending the contest launch, are: Sam Glasgow M.B.E., president, Mid-Ulster Section (right), Norman Bell (left) and Alex Crooks, vice-presidents of the Mid-Ulster Section.

The Mid-Ulster Section was formed in 1954 and continues to go from strength to strength.

The venue for the contest, which will take place on Saturday, 4 June, commencing at 11am, is Cookstown High School Sport Arena, which is located at Coolnafranky Demesne, Molesworth Street in the town.

There will be the usual six competitions taking place for pipe bands, details of which are as follows: Grade 1, Grade 2, Grade 3A, Grade 3B, Grade 4A and Grade 4B.

The playing requirements for each are: Grade 1 – march, strathspey and reel; Grade 2 – medley selection; Grade 3A – march, strathspey and reel; Grade 3B – march, strathspey and reel; Grade 4A – march, strathspey and reel; Grade 4B – march selection.

Pictured from left, are: Ray Hall, chairman, The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Northern Ireland Branch; Frances Burton, chair, development committee, Mid-Ulster District Council; Alan Ferguson, assistant child protection officer, Mid-Ulster Section; and Lowry Ferguson, vice-chairman 
Mid-Ulster Section.

Pictured from left, are: Ray Hall, chairman, The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Northern Ireland Branch; Frances Burton, chair, development committee, Mid-Ulster District Council; Alan Ferguson, assistant child protection officer, Mid-Ulster Section; and Lowry Ferguson, vice-chairman Mid-Ulster Section.

The drum majors will compete in four sections within the competition: Senior – over eighteen years of age on 1st November, Juvenile – up to eighteen years of age on 1st November, Junior – up to fourteen years of age on 1st November and Novice – up to eleven years of age on 1st November.

Entries closed on Monday, 16 May, at 8.00 p.m., with the contest secretary, Desmond McLaughlin, at The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Northern Ireland Branch website.

Last year, a total of forty-eight bands and forty-one drum majors entered for the competition and the officials of the Mid-Ulster Section are looking forward to similar figures this time.

Not only is this the longest running Section contest in Northern Ireland but it is also one of the most popular competitions on the pipe band calendar in Ireland.

The Mid-Ulster Championships are again supported by Mid-Ulster District Council.