New Zealand summer school, Christchurch

The annual Christchurch summer school was another great hit this year with a smashing high enrolment of 162 in attendance.
Many congratulations to all those who took part.  The tune writing competition that 
McCallum Bagpipes sponsors was a big hit also and very keenly contested.  Jack Lee
awarded the winners their well deserved prizes. 
The famous wee McCallum towles were given away to all the other honourable mentions.
Click on the tune names below to see the successful entries.

 1st Prize

Ben Murray  Tune-Imposter Benson, hornpipe. 

Winning the McC2 chanter 




2nd Prize

Morgan Tabuteau Tune- The Piper, 2/4 march.

Winning the McCallum Full Alloy PC9 practice chanter



3rd Prize

Sue Muir Tune-Dillemic Crossing, 2/4 march. 

Winning the McCallum Full Alloy PC7 practice chanter

Australian Pipe Band Assoc. Summer School 2012

Jack Lee said “The APBA summer school was again very well run.  The facilities were top-notch and we combined a lot of piobairchd, light music and pipe band instruction during the week.”

The results for the music writing competition were

1st    Morning Rush Hour by Sally-Anne Richter

2nd  Marching out St. George’s by Wey Shi Ong  

3rd  Macleod College by Adam Wishart

The winners were all delighted to be awarded McCallum chanters.








From left to right, Wey Shi Ong, Adam Wishart, Sally-Anne Richter and Jack Lee

Royal New Zealand Pipe Band Assoc. Summer School

“The annual New Zealand summer school was another big success.  There were over 200 students in attendance.  The pipers were encouraged to write original compositions and submit them to a group of adjudicators.  The 3 winning tune-writers were delighted to be awarded McCallum chanters”.

1st James Wansink with the tune ‘Wee Johnny’

2nd Mike Wellwood with the tune ‘Duncan, Ross, Malcolm and Mans’

3rd Fiona Smith with the tune ‘Aunty Jeans’ Jig’






From left to right, James Wansink, Fiona Smith, Mike Wellwood and Jack Lee


Lonson SPSL Bratach Gorm 2011

Congratulations to Willie McCallum on winning the Bratach Gorm for the fourth time in London on 5th November 2011. Willie capped off a great day by also winning the overall title, by virtue of winning the Bratach Gorm, 2nd in the Former Winners MSR, 3rd in the Hornpipe and  Jig and 4th in the Gillies Cup Open Piobaireachd. Willie was playing his own design McC² chanter. By virtue of winning this title Willie qualifies for the Glenfiddich Championship in 2012, making it his 25th time in succession at the competition.

 It was without doubt a successful day for many other competitors who were playing McCallum chanters and/or pipes. Iain Speirs continued his fine form by coming 2nd overall by virtue of 2nd in the Gillies Cup, 4th in the Bratach Gorm, 3rd in the Former Winners MSR, and 2nd in the Hornpipe and Jig.

 Niall Stewart took 1st in the JB Robertson March and 3rd in the Gillies Cup.

 Alex Gandy won the Hornpipe and Jig, also coming 4th in the A grade MSR and 3rd in the B Piobaireachd.

 Steven Leask was placed 1st in the C grade MSR and Hornpipe and Jig playing a full set of McCallum Bagpipes and McC² chanter.

 Gordon Walker took 5th place in the Gillies Cup, Callum Beaumont (5th in the Bratach Gorm / 5th in the Marches), Bruce Gandy (2nd Marches), Jenny Hazzard and Andrew Hall (2nd B MSR). Apologies if we have missed anyone from the list.

All the players mentioned have had great seasons and we at McCallum Bagpipes congratulate all of them and thank them for continuing to play and have faith in our products.

 The SPSL contest has been running since the 1930’s and the 2011 event attracted possibly the biggest entry in its history.

Glenfiddich Championship

Congratulations to Iain Speirs of Edinburgh who won the Piobaireachd event at the 2011 Glenfiddich Championship. This caps off a remarkable season for Iain, following his wins at the Argyllshire Gathering. Iain has for many years played a McCallum chanter. 

Also in the prizes at the same event playing the McC² chanter were Willie McCallum (4th Piob, 3rd MSR) and Niall Stewart, 4th MSR.

The overall event was won by Roddy MacLeod MBE and we congratulate Roddy on winning his 4th title.

McCallum Bagpipes Roadshow 18th November 2011

McCallum Bagpipes latest Roadshow will be in the North East of England on Friday 18th November, 2011 at 8pm.

The venue for the roadshow is the Dubmire Royal British Legion Club, Britania Terrace Fence Houses, Houghton Le Spring DH4 6LJ.

The show will feature Rory Grossart, Steven Leask, Stuart McCallum, Willie McCallum and Kenny MacLeod. MC for the event is Allan Hamilton.

Tickets £7.00 (including supper) available from Kevin Reilly Telephone 0191 512 0650 or 07931322114 or email:  or alternatively contact members of the Houghton Le Spring Pipe Band.

All proceeds go to RSPBA North East Branch and Sunningdale School for children with profound handicaps and complex medical needs.

All expenses are covered by McCallum Bagpipes Ltd.


Argyllshire Gathering Senior Piobaireachd

This year’s Argyllshire Gathering Senior Piobaireachd was won by Iain Speirs of Edinburgh. This is the most prestigious event at the Gathering as it is restricted to former winners of the Highland Society of London’s Gold Medal. Iain’s winning tune was ‘Port Urlar’.

Iain was taught originally by Jack D. Crichton and by his grandfather, Jock Speirs, Pipe Major in the London Scottish and of the Johnnie Walkers Pipe Band and his father Tom Speirs, Inverness Gold Medal (1980) and Clasp winner (1983). He is currently taught by Donald MacPherson.

Winning this event guarantees the winner a place at the Glenfiddich Championship in October but Iain had already qualified by virtue of winning the overall championship at London last November.

Iain has been a long time player of McCallum chanters and we wish him all the best for the Glenfiddich this year.

Photo is courtesy of Derek Maxwell

McCallum Victorian Solo Piping Championships

The 8th Annual McCallum Victorian Solo Piping Championships was promoted by the Moorabbin City Pipe Band and held at the Essex Heights Primary School in the eastern suburbs of Melbourneon Sunday 11th September.

The day was successful with over 50 entries over 6 Grades of Light Music and 3 Grades of Piobaireachd. 

The McCallum Victorian Solo Championships also encompasses the Victorian Pipers Association Gold Medal for Piobaireachd which was won this year by David MacDonald of Melbourne.

Alasdair Thom, fromScotland, won the Silver Medal.

The overall A Grade Light Music was won by R J Houston and the overall B Grade Light Music by Christine Poulter.

The McCallum Prize Bagpipes are awarded each year to a supportive and up and coming young piper as an encouragement award.

All the pipes have been won by pipers over the eight years who have gone on to play at A or B  Grade level and also play in Grade 1 & 2 pipe bands, 3 of which have played at the World Pipe Band Championships in Grade 1 with bands such as Dowco Triumph Street, Peel Police and the Band Club.

This year the McCallum Prize Bagpipe was awarded to Ellen McAnulty (pictured below).

Full results and the Victorian Pipers Association can be found at

Ellen McAnulty

Double Silver Medal Win

Gordon Bruce, pictured below, became only the 3rd person in history to win the double silver medal at the Argyllshire Gathering (Oban) and Northern Meeting (Inverness).

Gordon is originally from Arbroath and now stays in Kilwinning.

He graduated in 2007 with a 1st Class Honours Degree from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama’s BA Scottish Music – Piping Degree, becoming the first piper to graduate from the Piping Degree with 1st class Honours.

Gordon is the Bagpipe instructor at West Lothian Council, and PM of the West Lothian Schools Pipe Band, who have now begun to compete this year, Gordon having built the band up from scratch.

Previous bands Gordon played with are:- Arbroath RBL, Gordon Walker’s 52nd Lowland Regiment and Scottish Power.

Gordon currently receives tuition from Anne Johnston. Anne is a previous winner of the Silver Medal at the Northern Meeting, and just to complete the family picture, Ann’s son Finlay is also a previous winner of the same medal.

The tunes played by Gordon this year were ‘The Gen is Mine’ (Oban) and ‘The Battle of Auldearn (No1 Setting)’  (Inverness).

 As well as winning both Silver medals also achieved the overall for the B grade events at the Northern Meeting.

Gordon won all these events playing a McCallum Solo Chanter (McC²) which he has used for a number of years.

 We wish Gordon all the best for the Gold Medal competitions next year, although he will be a very busy man as he gets married next summer.

gordon bruce silver medal

gordon bruce silver medal

Argyllshire Gathering Gold Medal

At the Argyllshire Gathering, on 24th August, 2011, the Highland Society of London’s Gold Medal was won by Callum Beaumont, from Bo’ness, playing the tune ‘Keppoch’s March’. He becomes the latest piper to be added to the illustrious list of players to have won this award dating back to 1873. 

Callum was originally taught by Bert Smith and Tom Speirs and currently takes tuition from Willie McCallum. Callum is an instructor at the National Piping Centre and plays with Inveraray and District Pipe Band. He has previously won the World Pipe Band Championship with Shotts and Dykehead and Simon Fraser University Pipe Bands.

Callum is the latest in a number of prominent pipers who have recently won major prizes playing McCallum products. In Callum’s case, he plays a silver mounted set of McCallums and McC² solo chanter. Our hearty congratulations go to Callum and wish him every success in the future.

The picture below shows a happy Callum displaying his Gold Medal and McCallum Bagpipes.

Callum Beaumont Gold Medal

Callum Beaumont Gold Medal



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