One of Bradford’s musical institutions will celebrate its centenary next month by holding a reunion in the city centre.
The City of Bradford Pipe Band is extending an invite to all its former members and loyal supporters to attend the event at the Hilton Hotel, Hall Ings, on Saturday, April 12.
The band has about 30 members decked out in its Hunting Stewart tartan, ranging from a five year old highland dancer to drummers and pipers in their 80s, and accepts up to 20 bookings per year, playing to hundreds of people at parades and galas across the north of England.
Brian Slack, a band member of 60 years, said: “Whenever we get the opportunity to play in Bradford, people always stand and listen to us.
“I am delighted that the band has kept operating for 100 years. When I joined in 1954 I never dreamed this would be achieved, but now when I look back at some of the people who have given most of their lives to the band, I am not so surprised we have made it here.”
Bob Jenkins, a playing member for 36 years who has spent the past 21 years as Pipe Major and band chairman, said membership of the group teaches more than just musical and performance skills.
“Most importantly, we’re a social organisation who will welcome and teach people of all ages from the local community,” he said. “It’s a great hobby, especially for youngsters, as apart from learning the skills of playing an instrument or dancing, performing with a band like ours helps to build confidence, encourages discipline and helps with social interaction.”
The band featured in the opening scenes of the 2010 film, The King’s Speech, and returned to the competitive arena in events at Chatsworth and Ashbourne last year after a gap of nearly 20 years.
It has had new cap badges, featuring the legendary Bradford boar’s head on a Yorkshire rose, made to commemorate its centenary, and new members are welcome to join the weekly practise sessions on Wednesday evenings at Greengates Primary School, Bradford.
For more information, contact Stacey Jenkins on 07788 165055, or visit bradfordpipeband.co.uk.