OVER 100 bands from the UK and Ireland, Europe, Canada and the USA will descend upon Lurgan Park on Saturday, June 15, as the park plays host to the prestigious UK Pipe Band Championships for the first time.
The inaugural event at Lurgan Park is the first of three UK Championships to be held at the venue, following a successful bid by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council to host the UK-wide event in the park until 2021.
Over the next three years the event is expected to attract over 30,000 spectators and contribute a six-figure sum to the local economy, boosting tourism in the local area and reaffirming Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council’s strengthening credentials and experience in hosting major national events.
Organised by the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, the competition will feature over 3,000 players, including the best local pipers from varying competition grades ranging from juvenile right up to Grade One, along with drum majors and highland dancers, who will all be hoping to be crowned UK champions.
Ian Embelton, Chief Executive of the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association said, “Lurgan Park is a superb venue and RSPBA enjoys a long-standing relationship with the area, having successfully hosted the spectacular All Ireland Championships at the park in 2017.
“Preparations are well underway and we’re looking forward to returning to Lurgan Park to host the UK Pipe Band Championship for the first time next month.
“Visitors will have the rare opportunity to see world class bands competing for the coveted championship title and enjoy music from a range of talented players, including 48 Irish and Northern Irish bands and 50 Scottish bands, as well as international bands travelling from as far and wide as the Netherlands, Canada and the USA.”
There will also be plenty of entertainment on the day with a wide range of delicious food on offer from various vendors along with face painting, balloon modelling and a kid’s fairground zone for a great day out for all the family.
New Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough, Councillor Mealla Campbell, said, “We are delighted and honoured to be hosting the prestigious UK Pipe Band Championships in our borough for the first time.
“The event brings with it a significant influx of visitors and a massive audience from the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland, as well as international competitors and visitors.
“The competition is of an exceptionally high standard and, with thousands of competitors entertaining the crowds on the day, we expect this to be a showstopping event.
“The Championship is set to bring people of all ages and backgrounds together to enjoy a memorable day in Lurgan Park. With great food and entertainment for all the family, it’s a day out not to be missed!”
The UK Pipe Band Championship takes place at Lurgan Park from 10am to 6pm on Saturday 15th June.