Piping hot drummers beat their way to the world championship

By William O'Connor 

THERE was delight for St Joseph’s Pipe Band in Glasgow at the weekend when their drummers were crowned World Champions

This is a phenomenal achievement for the band who are located at the Old Nangor Road in Clondalkin and who were up against the top bands in their field.

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St Joseph's Pipe Band celebrate their success

The band had to play a qualifying heat on Saturday morning and comfortably made the Top Six to progress to the final showdown having won the piping and being placed second in drumming.

The final did not go according to plan for the pipers, but the drummers put in a sterling performance to come out on top.

The band has only been in its current grade for two seasons and is already setting its sights on moving to the next level which is Grade 2.

The band competed at this level during the 90s when they captured two All-Ireland titles and a World Title before being elevated to the Premier Grade 1 level.

“We are very happy with our progress and hope we can build a long-term foundation to continue the tradition of Piping and Drumming in our area,” said Tim Farrelly, Pipe Major of the band.

The band was founded in 1937 and has always been at the heart of the community in Clondalkin. However, Pipe Bands have mostly disappeared from the streets of Dublin where there once was a booming scene with bands in Tallaght, Rathcoole, Crumlin, Ballyfermot and Inner City Dublin.

The band generally just focuses on the competition circuit with occasional performances at events, parades and concerts.

The 2018 contest season has seen the band make great strides in the competition arena after many years off the road.

The highlight of the year for the band was winning the All-Ireland Championships in New Ross back in July with a convincing clean sweep in both Piping and Drumming.

Pipe Bands are graded to various standards from Grade 5 all the way to the Premier Grade 1 level.

St. Joseph’s Pipe Band competes at Grade 3A level which is a reasonably high standard for what is basically an amateur endeavour and essentially a hobby for all of the members.

The band has competed at four of the five Major Championships in the UK this season and has been placed in the UK, Scottish and British Championships, in addition to its All-Ireland title.

The drum corps has been extremely successful and are the current UK and All-Ireland champions.

Earlier this year the band also recorded a scene in a soon-to-be-released big screen movie, A Girl from Mogadishu. The band plays the National Anthem in a high-profile scene in the movie.

The band is already planning for 2019 and currently has plans to introduce a new start-up band for those wanting to start out playing either the pipes or drums. The band is based on the Old Nangor Road in Clondalkin where it holds regular classes and rehearsals throughout the year. Beginners always welcome.

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