Topics:  bagpipes, contest, event, ipswich, ipswich thistle pipe band, limestone park, music, new south wales, pipe bands, queensland championships gathering of the clans, queensland highlanders, state of origin, tartan

Flurry of tartan

Pipe Major Jason Palfrey, from the Grade 1 winning Queensland Highlanders, sets the air ringing at the Gathering of the Clans.
Pipe Major Jason Palfrey, from the Grade 1 winning Queensland Highlanders, sets the air ringing at the Gathering of the Clans. Sarah Harvey

LIMESTONE Park echoed with the skirl of bagpipes on Saturday, when 15 pipe bands met for an interstate contest.

The Queensland Championships Gathering of the Clans featured bands from across Queensland and New South Wales, but the State of Origin-style event saw Queensland emerge as the resounding winner.

Queensland bands were first in all four grades of competition.

The Queensland Highlanders won the top Grade 1 award, after the Grade 1 competition was reinstated thanks to a second entry from Sydney band The Pipe Band Club.

The Grade 2 first place went to Brisbane's St Andrew's band; the Wynnum RSL Pipe Band won Grade 3, and the University of Queensland Emmanuel College Pipe Band won Grade 4.

Ipswich Thistle Pipe Band secretary Katrina Stead said the local band enjoyed hosting the event.

"It was a huge day. It started at 8am and finished about five," Ms Stead said.

"People who stayed for a couple of hours found their ears were still ringing after they left."

Ms Stead said she was pleased the competition had drawn the attention from bands as far away as Sydney.

"We also had judges travel from South Australia and New South Wales, so it's a very big event."

She said the Thistle Pipe Band had been running Gathering of the Clans for about 20 years.

"We'll be doing it all again next year," she promised.



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