Piping extravaganza this weekend

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A SPECIALLY chartered plane will transport the world famous St Laurence O’Toole Pipe Band from Dublin to Stornoway at the end of this week to take part in the Meeting of the Bands.

Organised by Stornoway Amenity Trust, the event on March 2 and 3 will include two concerts at Lewis Sports Centre featuring the former world champions and local performers.

Lewis Pipe Band, Skye Pipe Band, Uist Pipe Band and Sgoil Lionacleit Pipe Band will join St Laurence O’Toole for a massed bands concert on the Friday night (March 2) also with performances from Isle Dance and the Lynn Maclean Dancers.

The massed pipe bands will then perform on the Saturday at the Macleod Stone in Harris (11am) and at the Callanish Stones at 3pm. If the weather is favourable this promises to be a stunning site and the public are welcome to attend these free events.

On Saturday evening a Grand Finale concert will feature the Pipe Band and also Face the West, Fiona Martin, Barra a’Dannsa Jane Douglas Dancers and Gaelic choirs.

The events are a follow up the hugely successful Tattoo Hebrides held in 2009 for the Year of the Homecoming. This featured the 78th Fraser Highlanders at a Tattoo event on Lews Castle Green and a Grand Concert in Lewis Sports Centre. Next week’s events are a sequel to this to coincide with the end of the Year of the Scottish Islands.

The next year of Homecoming is 2014 so those who miss out next week will have to wait another two years for another piping spectacular organised by the Amenity Trust.

Meeting of the Bands is funded by the Scotland’s Islands project (part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund) www.scotlandsislands.com

Tickets for the concert events are available at the Stornoway Tourist Information Office or online at www.thebooth.co.uk