Monday, June 27, 2011

The British Pipe Band Championships 2011

After a short break, our competition season resumed this week with the British Championships in Annan.

The weather forecast was for heavy rain. Fortunately, though, this never quite materialised, with the worst that we faced being a light shower or two during the march past.

The day started early, with a 5:30 start. The band were joined on this occasion by Lady Chocolat, who disappointed the ladies who follow the band by arriving absent her engagement ring (which was being resized). Still, we climbed aboard the bus, and began the long journey south.

The performance itself came and went, and went rather well, or so we thought. We were aware of a few things needing work, but both the Pipe Major and Lead Drummer were quite happy, thinking it our best performance of the season.

And then we settled in for the long wait...

Unfortunately, the results at the end of the day simply did not reflect our optimism about the performance. We came 13th out of 19, scoring a 4th and a 16th for piping, 14th for drumming, and 15th for ensemble. It would seem that there is something that the judges are looking for that we're just missing.

This was obviously a hugely disappointing result, especially given that we were quite happy with the performance. The one positive that we can take from this is that it basically means we cannot hope to be promoted this year (which was always a big ask), and so can relax a bit more, and try to enjoy the rest of the season.

The journey home was interesting, and somewhat uncomfortable, but for reasons largely unrelated to the result. I may comment on that in a later post, but it is definitely a topic for another time.

The next competition is the Riding of the Marches next week, which also takes place in Annan. The next major competition is the European Championships in Ireland at the end of next month.

#17: "The Fort", by Bernard Cornwell

(My current plan is to try to read through the latest Pathfinder book and "Watcher of the Dead" by J.V. Jones over the next week or so. Then, after next week's Riding of the Marches, I'll move on to tackle "War and Peace"...)

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