Bathgate band takes the title of 2023 World Pipe Band Champions

Bathgate band takes the title of 2023 World Pipe Band Champions

The spectacular finale of The 2023 World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow on Saturday 19 August saw Peoples Ford Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia Pipe Band crowned the winners of the renowned international contest.

It is the long-established Scottish pipe band’s first-ever World Champions win. Based in Bathgate, West Lothian, Peoples Ford Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia fought off stiff competition from runners-up – and 2022 champions – Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band of Lisburn, Northern Ireland. Last year’s runners-up, Inveraray and District Pipe Band, finished in third place.

This year’s ‘ultimate battle of the bands’, which took place over two days on Glasgow Green, attracted around 35,000 spectators. The highly-anticipated championships represent the pinnacle of the competitive pipe band calendar. The major annual event draws thousands of pipers and drummers to Scotland, reflecting the level of worldwide interest in our national instrument.

Glasgow, a UNESCO City of Music, first hosted the World Pipe Band Championships 75 years ago in 1948, and has hosted the event every year since 1986.

The 2023 championships saw 15 countries represented. With 190 bands taking part in this year’s Worlds, just under 9,000 pipers and drummers took to the field to play over the two days. The nations featured in the line-up of contenders included Australia, Canada, USA, England, Northern Ireland, Israel, Oman, Malaysia, and Zimbabwe. The largest contingent of bands – a total of 116 – came from Scotland.

The World Pipe Band Championships are delivered by charity Glasgow Life on behalf of Glasgow City Council, with support from EventScotland – part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate.

Glasgow’s Lord Provost Jacqueline McLaren, Chieftain of The 2023 World Pipe Band Championships, said:

It has been wonderful for the city to host the Worlds once again and bring together the planet’s finest and most talented pipers and drummers. It’s a contest of huge importance to the global pipe band community and a firm cultural favourite here.

Our thanks go to all the musicians for the superb entertainment they provided us with, and our congratulations go to Peoples Ford Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia Pipe Band on bringing the World Champions title back home to Scotland.

Kevin Reilly, Chairman of The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association, said:

All of the thousands of pipers and drummers who gathered in Glasgow for this year’s championships did their bands and their countries proud. They treated our audiences to an incredible display of talent and skill, making the event a great success, and a really unforgettable experience for everyone. Huge congratulations go to our 2023 World Champions, Peoples Ford Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia Pipe Band – they are very deserving winners.

Further details on all of the awards presented at this year's Worlds are available on the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association website

Highlights from this year’s Worlds can be viewed on BBC Scotland on Friday 25 August at 8pm, and there’s another chance to watch them on Sunday 27 August at 4.05pm.