The Beeston & District Pipe Band Society was formed in August 1965 by a group of enthusiasts who were past members of the 17th Nottingham (Beeston) Company Boys' Brigade Pipe Band. The BB band had been a dream become reality for Captain Phillipson - he became the first President of the new Beeston Band and Ancient MacDonald was chosen for the Band kilts also in his honour; we wear the very same tartan to this day.
The first uniform worn was kilt, Lovat hose and navy blue battledress tops purchased from the Civil Defence for 2/6d each (12.5p in new money!). Many fund-raising activities were organised with one aim in mind - that the Band should one day parade in full highland dress. Through the hard work and enthusiasm of all the early members and their families and supporters this dream was eventually achieved; the price of current individual items is, of course, just a little bit higher these days!
Membership of the Scottish Pipe Band Association was granted in 1966. That same year they took part in their first competitions in Grade IV and also public engagements. Promotion soon came, the band being upgraded to Grade III in 1970 and then achieving Grade II status in 1975 after winning the Scottish and Cowal Championships the previous year.
Today the Band continues to successfully compete at Grade III level in contests throughout the entire UK and Northern Ireland and also fulfils a busy programme of engagements, not only at home in the UK but also overseas, over the years visiting:
France, Spain, Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, Sicily, Switzerland, Denmark and Canada.
The Band has played for Queen Beatrix of Holland through a link formed with the Onda brass band of Middelburg. The Band has also represented the borough of Broxtowe in its twin town of Gütersloh in Germany.
In 2006 the band achieved the tremendous result of becoming the Grade 3B Champion of Champions in both Band AND Drumming (i.e. we came top of the league table of results from the 5 "Majors" - the Scottish, British, European, Worlds and Cowal Championships). In 2007 we managed to secure again the Grade 3 All-England Championship and, even more spectacularly, managed to achieve a Champion of Champions drum corps crown for the second year in a row after having been upgraded to Grade 3A!! The very same CoC crown was missed for an amazing third year in succession in 2008 by a single point in the table, lost at the very last Major of the season with the corps coming disappointingly second in the final analysis. Another day...
The band is entirely self-financing, receiving no regular sponsorship or grants from any source. Our only income comes from member subscriptions, fees from paid engagements and contest prize monies. Most active members spend several hundred pounds of their own money each year just to keep the band profile high within the UK contest circuit. Should a suitable sponsor be interested in the band and arrangements can be worked out to mutual advantage the band would be most happy to discuss terms. Even help towards coach hire for one championship a year would help relieve the strain on individual sporrans. It is a fact that, love them or hate them, the 'pipes attract people from far and wide whenever they are played in public; think on that!