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Welcome Pipe Major McLaren - Thank You Pipe Major MacPherson!

Glasgow Police Pipe Band are delighted to announce the appointment of Alisdair McLaren

as Pipe Major. Alisdair takes the reigns from Pipe Major Iain MacPherson, who will remain within the piping ranks.

Alisdair has vast experience having previously been Pipe Major of Western

Australia Police Pipe Band, before moving to the UK. He played during a successful

period with Strathclyde Police before enjoying huge success with Field Marshal

Montgomery Pipe Band.

Alisdair is very well acquainted with leading Drummer David Henderson through years of

collaboration via the National Youth Pipe band of Scotland.

On his appointment, Alisdair said:

“I am honoured to be appointed to the position of Pipe Major of The Glasgow Police Pipe

Band. As a young piper growing up in Perth, Australia, the Strathclyde Police Pipe Band, as

it was known then, were one of the top bands which inspired me throughout my musical

development. To now have the opportunity to lead such an important and iconic band is a

great responsibility and privilege.

I would like to most importantly thank Iain for his dedication, leadership and support to

me over the last few seasons and I look forward to his continued involvement within the

pipe corps. Going forward, I'm very excited about working with Drum Sergeant David

Henderson and the rest of the team, as we look to further build a solid foundation into

next season and beyond.”

Leading Drummer David Henderson commented:

“ I’m delighted with the appointment of Alisdair McLaren as Pipe Major. Alisdair brings

with him a wealth of experience at the highest level, knowledge and enthusiasm; all

necessary attributes when striving for success. I am positive that together we will build a

team capable of reaching our short and long term goals and I look forward to the journey


I would like to thank Pipe Major Iain MacPherson for his dedication and leadership of the

band as Pipe Major. He has been a driving force in building a young band with huge

potential for the future and I am grateful for the time I had working with him. I am

delighted he will be continuing as part of the team going forward.

I look forward to what are exciting times ahead for the Glasgow Police Pipe Band.”

Departing Pipe Major Iain MacPherson said:

“I was fortunate enough to initially play with the band in the 1980s and it was an honour

to serve as Pipe Major after my retirement from the Police in 2012.

I am indebted to Duncan Nicholson and Niall West in working so hard to avoid the band

folding during a most difficult phase several years ago. In that regard, many thanks are due

to the Scottish Police Federation who recognise the worth of our historic band and now

provide significant financial and administrative support.

I feel that, as Pipe Major, I was in a bit of a “caretaker “ role recently, whilst trying to build

for the future. It’s really pleasing that positive interest in the band is on the rise again from

Police Scotland and the worst years are behind us. I’m moving from the central belt for

family reasons, but plan to continue having a tune with the band next season! Good luck

to Alisdair, he has my full backing and ongoing support.”

Band Manager and Drum Major Niall West said:

“ I’d like to extend congratulations to Alisdair McLaren, the new Pipe Major of Glasgow

Police Pipe Band. His experience, drive and musical attributes will serve him well in what is

undoubtedly a challenging but prestigious role. His appointment comes as a result of

succession planning, and he has been instrumental in the last 3 years, along with Iain

MacPherson, in building and continuing to build a pipe corps of talented individuals who

this year surmounted a steep learning curve to achieve very good performances and

commensurate results at the World Pipe Band Championships. Under Alisdair and David

Henderson, I anticipate that the future of the band is very healthy. In addition, our

heritage as a Police Band is of significant historic and cultural importance and Alisdair as

much as anyone is keenly aware of that: he was Pipe Major of a “full time” Police band in

Australia, a former player with Strathclyde Police Pipe Band and he upholds the standards

which underpin our Police band philosophy. At this time I’d like to thank both Iain

MacPherson and his predecessor, Duncan Nicholson for their unstinting commitment to

making our band the best it could be in the most trying circumstances over recent years.

Indeed, that period was marked with some excellent performances, not least of all, the

“Ceolry” concert. It is a result of their efforts, among other factors, that we are now able to

look forward to an exciting future in a stable and positive environment, supported by the

Scottish Police Federation. Good Luck, Alisdair!”

We would like to thank Pipe Major MacPherson for his leadership and guidance over the past few years. It is due to him that the band is in a much healthier state than it was and the foundations have been laid for a bright future. We look forward to the journey ahead with Pipe Major Alisdair McLaren at the helm!

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