Belfast Telegraph

World pipe band champions crowned

More than 50,000 people turned out to see Ireland`s St Laurence O'Toole crowned the World Pipe Band Champions.

The annual contest, held on Glasgow Green, saw Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band from Northern Ireland take second place.

Some home cheer was provided by Scotland's Boghall and Bathgate pipe band from West Lothian, which took third spot.

The new world champions were crowned after more than nine hours of competition, with almost 240 bands taking part.

The event ended with the spectacle of the thousands of pipers and drummers who had been competing throughout the day taking part in a march past, before the world champions were crowned in front of the massive crowd.

Ian Embelton, from the organisers the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, said: "Every year the standard of competition is so high but the fans this year have seen something extra special.

"Planning for next year is already under way but we are going to have to pull out all the stops to improve on these championships."

The event, which has been held in Glasgow for more than 60 years, drew people from all over the world to see 8,000 top pipers and drummers compete. Glasgow Green also played host to some of the strongest men in the world in a World Highland Games as part of the event.

Culture Minister Fiona Hyslop was among the first to pay tribute to the winners.

She said: "I would like to congratulate this year's World Pipe Band Champions, St Laurence O' Toole Pipe Band, and everyone who has helped make this spectacular contest such a success. From the spine-tingling sound of the massed pipes and drums to the delicious local food and drink, this year's event has offered audiences at home and around the world a real taste of Scotland at its best."

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