OT: 15 November 1924 – Interested “The Highland Pipers’ Society”
Sir, For the past twenty years the Highland Pipers’ Society has been foremost in providing facilities in the Scottish Capital for the cultivation of the arts of piping and dancing, and one is glad to know that it still continues its good work with unabated vigour. During the ensuing session, the meeting-place will be the C. F. Church Hall in Lothian Road, and already two very successful gatherings have been held there. Nowhere else in Scotland could an admirer of the Piob Mhor be as certain of meeting of an evening with so many notable players as well as citizens, old and young, desirous of fostering the study of pipe music at Highland dancing. Here professional players world-wide we now mingle with a crowd of enthusiastic amateurs, and it is no uncommon occurrence to witness several of the leading prize-winners of the Northern Meeting, Argyllshire, Cowal, Braemar, and other important Highland piping competitions taking part in band selections and marching, side-by-side, with youthful budding champions, who are proud to claim friendship with such “masters” and of having the opportunity of emulating their style. Following on these band performances, strathspeys, reels, sword and other Highland dances are engaged in, with much skill and purpose by a large number of the juvenile members–all neatly clad in Highland costume; and on occasions, for their special benefit, exhibitions are given by some of Scotland’s best dancers, such as Mr. J. A. Gordon and Mr. Sidney A. Black. It should be mentioned that not a few of these juveniles have taken place at the principal Gatherings in Scotland, and it is with no small pride they wear their handsome medals, which, amongst their own class, are just as much cherished as any V. C. in the Army. It is to the credit of the Society that they have been the means of bringing to the front not only young pipers, but, also so many aspiring dancers.
One of the most attractive features of the society’s meetings is the first-rate solo piping selections so I’m grudgingly rendered by its most skilled performers. At the meetings already help the session, there were present the famous Pipe-Major William Ross, Pipe-Major James Sutherland, Pipe-Major J. O. Duff, Mr. William MacLeod, Mr. A. M. Calder and Mr. Malcolm Johnston, the Hon. Secretary, and their contributions, including piobaireachd, marches, strathspeys and reels were much enjoyed. The Society’s Pipe-Major (Mr. John McDonald), the Hon. Treasurer (Mr. Peter Roberts), and the Hon. Secretary (Mr. Malcolm Johnston, 35 Bellevue Road, Edinburgh), still continue to give their best services to the Society.
Mr. Burn Murdoch and Mr. R. D. Black continue as hon. chief and chieftain respectively, and Mr. MacIntosh of Mr. H. MacDonald Shield, S. S. C., as vice-presidents. Both the latter were present at the opening meeting, which was briefly addressed by the president, Mr. Donald Shaw S.S.C., who has so successfully directed the working of the Society since it was founded. Mr. Shaw has been elected president for twenty years in succession–possibly a unique record office in any Highland organisation.–I am, etc.