6th December, Rachel Thom Talks Drumming

Rachel Thom is our current Drumming Intern at SSPDT. Her love of pipe band drumming began at the age of 10 when she attended a school taster session and she hasn’t looked back since.

She joined West Lothian School’s Pipe Band in 2010, becoming Lead Drummer the following year. She is proud to have competed with WLSPB in major competitions and taken part in many parades including at the official opening of the Queensferry Crossing. During her time with the band they won two Stellar Award’s, The Trad Award and were crowned the 2014 Champion of Champions. Read more.

27th November, £30k funding boost to Girvan Schools

Up to £30,000 across three years has been awarded to South Ayrshire Council. The funding will go towards piping and drumming tuition within the Girvan Schools Cluster programme. Best wishes to the youngsters involved.

27th November, Bagpipe loans approved

The Trust has approved the loan of a further 36 sets of bagpipes which will go to a number of organisations across Scotland, from the Isles of Lewis and Harris to Dumfries and Galloway. A total of 12 set of pipes will be loaned to the Lewis and Harris Youth Pipe Band, with a further 15 sets going to the Lossiemouth and District Schools Pipes and Drums Band. In addition, 9 sets will go to The South West of Scotland Piping and Drumming Academy. Congratulations to all involved.

21st November, The Isle of Arran Schools Pipe Band

Eighty promising players now benefit from free piping and drumming lessons in schools on the Isle of Arran. “Our project evolved from a chance conversation with a member of the local pipe band at a Burns’ Supper and is now a fantastic, fully-fledged (and pledged) programme,” says James O’Neil, faculty head of Music at the High School and chair of the Arran Music School. Read more

30th October, Eddie Seaman’s Piping Journey

Eddie’s piping journey began at the age of 12 when he started playing the chanter at school in Edinburgh. He was taught the pipes by Colin MacLellan and throughout his time at High School he was a regular prize winner in the junior competitions and was thrilled that his piping took him on several trips abroad with various pipe bands. The joy he experienced when playing the pipes fuelled his desire to play professionally and encourage others to take up this traditional musical instrument.  Read more

15th October, The Lewis and Harris Youth Pipe Band Project

The Lewis and Harris Youth Pipe Band Project launched in September 2016, following an award from SSPDT of £15,000 across three years towards drumming workshops and Skype lessons. Initially, a taster session took place for interested pupils which successfully led to the development of a drum corps for the youth pipe band, the first of its kind in the local area. Read more

October 2018, Bagpipes to Tiree Piping Society

Six sets of bagpipes have arrived on the island of Tiree, having been loaned by SSPDT to Tiree Piping Society for a period of three years. Pupils at Tiree High School and Primary School will be using the pipes over the coming years. Happy piping!

26th September, Callum Hall’s Piping Experience

Back in August 2015, Callum and some of his fellow students at McLaren High School set out to start a school pipe band. Within 18 months the McLaren High School Pipe Band placed 2nd in the debut category at SSPDT’s Scottish School’s Pipe Band Championships in March 2017 and won the prestigious Endeavour Award. By the time Callum had left the school, the band consisted of nearly 20 members and they had raised over £11,000 in order to employ two extra music tutors to teach at the high school and all 13 feeder primary schools. Additional funding was provided by SSPDT to support the band; over £19,000 over three years was awarded in 2017 to go towards tuition costs and pipe band workshops.Read more


12th September, Pilrig Park’s Story

In September 2017 SSPDT set up a new tuition programme at Pilrig Park School in Edinburgh and pledged £15,000 across three years. The school meets the needs of youngsters who require additional support, from those with moderate to complex needs. Two music tutors joined the programme, Andrew Warren, piping tutor and David Murray, drumming tutor. Over the course of the tuition, the pupils have grown in confidence and take pride in their new skills. A number of individuals are showing great promise in their musical abilities. Read more.

10th September, ******Applications to The 2019 Championships are

now OPEN******

Would you like to be part of the world’s largest schools piping competition? Entries for next year’s Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships are now OPEN!

The event will take place on Sunday 10th March 2019 at Inveralmond Community High School in Livingston. For further details on the event and how to enter click here.

28th August, Hannah Yorkston’s Drumming Journey

Hannah’s drumming journey started back in 2012 when she began pipe band bass drumming at Preston Lodge High School (PLHS). At that time, PLHS pipe band was a non-competing band but in the 2013 season the band made their debut as a competing Novice Pipe Band. The following year, the band placed in the top 6 at all the major championships and was crowned British Champions, experiences which Hannah was hugely proud to be a part of and describes as “a massive achievement as it was only the second year of competing”. Following such great successes, the end of the 2014 season saw the band promoted to the Juvenile grade. Read more.

14th August, The Govan Schools Pipes and Drums Association

The Govan Schools programmes started in 2014, supported by SSPDT, with the objective of providing piping and drumming lessons to school pupils in Govan Schools. The Govan Schools Pipes and Drums Association (GSPDA) is the steering committee for the programme and aims to provide the children of Govan with the opportunity to learn a life skill and to inspire confidence, commitment and team spirit. Within a few short months of the programme commencing, some of the pupils had progressed so fast that they were able to enter a quartet of pipers into the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships. Read more.

July 2018, Bagpipes for young children to be loaned to Aberdeenshire Council

SSPDT is delighted to announce that 6 new sets of pipes, with small bags and adjustable pipes, will be loaned to Aberdeenshire Council. These pipes can be used by young children before they progress to full size pipes. Piping can be enjoyed by all ages so we hope these pipes can help facilitate this and inspire a new generation’s love of playing.

July 2018, Bagpipes for East Renfrewshire Council


15 sets of bagpipes will be loaned to East Renfrewshire Council for 3 years due to recent approval of the award by SSPDT Trustees. The pipes will be put to use by pupils at Barrhead High School and its feeder primary schools. Our best wishes to all the pupils involved and happy piping!







June 2018, £6,580 start-up grant awarded to Lossiemouth and District Schools Pipe Band

Congratulations to Lossiemouth and District Schools Pipe Band who have been awarded a £6,580 grant by the Trust. This will fund start-up costs, a hardship fund for 20 pupils and band practice for one year for Lossiemouth High School and four feeder primary schools, to enable the formation of the Lossiemouth and District Schools Pipe Band. The best of luck to everyone involved!

May 2018, A new full time drumming post to be funded in Highland

SSPDT has pledged a grant of up to £30,000 across two years to Highland High Life to underwrite a new full time drumming post. This will bring tuition to all the primary schools and secondary schools in Lochalsh and on the Isle of Skye. Congratulations on this exciting opportunity and good luck to all over the next two years.

12th March, Piping Hit 2018 winner crowned!

Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships 2018

At the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships, we were delighted to announce the winner of our first ever Piping Hit competition – Archie MacKechnie from Dollar Academy! Read more here.

12th March, Another great year for the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships!

Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships 2018

Students from 150 Scottish schools attended the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships, which showcases Scotland’s young musical talent, at Inveralmond Community High School in West Lothian and took part in a range of competitions from quartets to pipe band performances, wowing the judges and audience with phenomenal playing. Read more here.

February 2018, Purchase of pipe band drums for the Stirling and District Schools Junior Pipe Band

SSPDT has awarded up to £5,000 to the Stirling and District Schools Junior Pipe Band to go towards the purchase of pipe band drums. The Junior Band involves 25 children from four different school clusters in the region, so the Trust are delighted to award this grant to such a worthy cause.

February 2018, £13,600 funding awarded to Kinross-shire Youth Pipes and Drums

The Trust was delighted to award £13,600 across two years to the Kinross-shire Youth Pipes and Drums. The funding will go towards two Kick-Start weekends, a hardship fund over two years, band/club practice, tutor costs and travel across the Kinross High School cluster.

8th February, First Minister to support young pipe band talent!

First Minister - SSPDT

We are delighted to announce that First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will join us at the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships in March! Read more here.

4th February, Teaching and Learning Hub

The latest in our Teaching and Learning films, drawn from the national Professional Development Forum held in October with the National Piping Centre is here https://sspdt.org.uk/about/learning-and-cpd/

Films include: Working with Mixed Ability Groups by Dr Rachel Drury, Muscoskeletal Disorders by physiotherapist Patrice Berque, Fundraising by Mike Nicholson and Hearing Protection by former musician and director of ACS Custom, Jono Heale.

January 2018, Pipe band drums for Stromness Academy

Stromness Academy have been awarded funding of £4,900 from SSPDT to purchase of a set of pipe band drums, and for the loan of 12 sets of bagpipes for up to three years. The Trust is thrilled to provide the award and excited to see the results over the coming years.

26th January, £58k funding boost for young pipers and drummers in Dundee

Dundee City Council is delighted to announce a new partnership which will extend piping and drumming tuition to pupils in Dundee thanks to funding from the Scottish Schools Pipes and Drums Trust. Read more here.

22nd December, Govan pipers on BBC The One Show!

Our pipers from Govan were selected to take part in a special rendition of the Twelve Days of Christmas on BBC The One Show!

13th December, £70k funding boost for Arran schools

Arran Pipes

Primary and secondary pupils on the Isle of Arran can now learn the pipes and drums in schools for the first time, thanks to a new tuition programme funded by charitable donations and grants, totalling £70,500. Read more here…

23rd October, Tuition launched at Pilrig Park School

SSPDT has pledged a grant of £15,000 to the school to fund piping and drumming tuition to 20 pupils with additional support needs over the next three years. Read more here…

16th October, Tarbert youngsters to benefit from funding

Credit Kevin MacKaveney

Fèis an Tairbeirt will be bringing piping and drumming tuition to pupils in Tarbert, thanks to funding from the Scottish Schools Pipes and Drum Trust. Read more here…

3rd October, Piping and Drumming Forum and Workshop


We’ve just held our second Piping and Drumming Forum and Workshop in partnership with the National Piping Centre in Glasgow. The day was attended by piping and drumming instructors from across Scotland and they were presented with invaluable sessions. Read more here..

27th September, Piping Hit 2018 – the search is on…

SSPDT Piping Hit 2018

Have you ever tried composing your own tunes? Would it make you feel proud to hear other musicians playing a piece of music that you wrote? Or even hearing it online or on the radio? If you think you could compose a piece of music, suitable for our national instrument, the Great Highland Bagpipes, then this is the opportunity for you! Read more…