THE Mid-Ulster Section of The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Northern Ireland Branch has received a fantastic entry of forty-three bands and forty-three drum majors for the Mid-Ulster Championships, which will be held on Saturday, 1st June, commencing at 11.00 a.m.
The venue for the contest this year again is Cookstown High School Sports Arena, Coolnafranky Demesne, Molesworth Street, Cookstown.
The Mid-Ulster competition is the longest running Section contest in Northern Ireland.
The entry in itself shows the high respect the bands and drum majors have for the Mid-Ulster Section. Not too many contests will top the interest shown in this particular championship.
This Mid-Ulster competition is the third contest of the new season in Northern Ireland and has received the largest entry so far. Therefore, the Mid-Ulster Championships could turn out to be the most popular contest once again.
There will be three competing arenas at Cookstown High School Sports Arena, two for the six grades of pipe bands and one for the four sections of drum majors.
Play in arena 1 (pipe bands) will commence at 11.30 a.m., arena 2 (pipe bands) at 11.30 a.m. and arena 3 (drum majors) judging for dress will start at
Four competitions will take place in arena 1: Grade 4B, Grade 3B, Grade 2 and
The bands in the other competitions, Grade 4A and Grade 3A, will all play in arena 2.
All four sections of the drum majors’ championships: Novice, Junior, Juvenile and Senior, will be contested in arena 3.
The entries in each band competition are: Grade 1 – three, Grade 2 – six,
Grade 3A – seven, Grade 3B – four, Grade 4A – ten and Grade 4B – thirteen.
Entries in the four categories of drum majors are: Adult – nine,
Juvenile – sixteen, Junior – eleven and Novice – seven.
The honour of ‘Chieftain of the Day’ goes to Robert Kirkland from Dungannon, who is well known within the pipe band family. This year will see Robert complete sixty years as a piper, a fantastic achievement.
The grand finale will commence at 4.30 p.m., with Police Service of Northern Ireland, Ravara, Closkelt and Colmcille, performing as the centre bands.
All the other competing bands and drum majors will then march into the arena to the sound of the four centre bands.
The official charity nominated by the Mid-Ulster Section this year is Parkinson’s Disease Society United Kingdom.
Trevor Wilson (Cookstown) chairman of the Mid-Ulster Section, will officially introduce the chieftain to the gathering.
The chieftain, Robert Kirkland (Dungannon), will give his address to all the officials, competing bands and drum majors.
A new perpetual cup, Alex Crooks (Coagh) Memorial Trophy, will be handed over today to the Mid-Ulster Section by the Crooks family in memory of Alex, who had sadly passed away on Sunday, 13th May, 2018.
Alex Crooks had held the following posts within the Mid-Ulster Section of The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association Northern Ireland Branch: committee member, auditor, vice-chairman, chairman and vice-president.