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Och aye! Takapuna enjoys skirl of the pipes

Flagstaff Team

Plenty of puff… the Auckland and District Pipe Band make their way down Lake Rd during the New Zealand Pipe Band Championships on 16 March

Tartan army marches into Takapuna
Thousands descended on Takapuna for the biggest pipe band competition outside of Scotland, the New Zealand Pipe Band Championships on 15 and 16 March. Around 1500 people took part in the competition, held in Onewa Domain, with thousands more watching and supporting. On Saturday, 41 bands paraded along Byron Ave, Lake Rd and the Strand. The Canterbury Caledonian Society Pipe Band were the top-division championship winners.

PHOTOS: Lochlan Lineham

Street performers… Members of Nelson’s Celtic Pipe Band enter The Strand in Takapuna

Out in front… The City of Sails Pipe Band was led by drum major Callum Thomson, whose ‘mace flourishing’ was judged the best at the championships

Looking on…Takapuna residents Aaron and Holly O’Neill heard the bagpipes and joined the crowd of spectators.

‘Big fans’ of pipe bands Jan and Kevin Danswan travelled from Katikati to see the championships.

Eyes right… City of Dunedin drum major Brent Cooper salutes national Pipe Band Association president Iain Blakeley during the march-past

Last parade closes drum major’s 60-year career

Auckland Police Pipe Band drum major Eddie Eeles was overcome with emotion during his final march with the band. Eeles has been a drum major for six decades, having 40 years with the Auckland and District Pipe Band and 20 with the police band. The 81-year-old said while he had mixed feelings about hanging up the drum major’s mace, it felt like the “right time”. His departure was commemorated at the end of the march, when members of the City of Sails Auckland and District and police bands band formed a guard of honour to acknowledge him.

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