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                                                                 July/August 2016: Dumfries and Berwick

                                                                1ST JULY : 100th Anniversary of the Battle of the Somme

                          23rd April 2016 :    BULLY  LES MINES  -  LONGUEVAL

21st Nov, ceremony at Flesquières for the Tank Corps  under the rain and with a very cold wind


                                                                              CHOCQUES BRITISH CEMETERY - 11th November



                                                                                      LENS AIRSHOW / BATTLE OF LOOS     

31st July : Hommage to the 51st Highland Division at Authuille (Somme)

18th to 22nd June : Alnwick (Scotland)

10th May: Levallois-Perret

25th April: ANZAC DAY - Longueval

 Loos Cemetery



The review  " Piping World" has recently published a picture of our pipe band to thank us for the ceremonies of remembrance where we play since the raising of the SBPB. Thanks to Jaime and Bruce for their good friendship.



    WW1 Centenary / SBPB Badge

(copyrights protected) 

The Centenary of WW1 will begin in a few months time. The SOMME BATTLEFIELD Pipe Band has submitted a project to the Somme Council Centenary Commission entitled “Ne les oublions pas-Don`t forget them” the project will involve more than forty towns and villages of the Somme. We await the approval of Centenary Commission.
Presentation of he project:
Since the formation of the S.B.P.B. in 1989,our band have taken part in many ceremonies of remembrance for both WW1-WW2 in conjunction with British and Commonwealth Veterans,and have gained the respect and gratitude of all the many ex-service personnel,their families,Veterans associations and all those who continue to serve. The S.B.P.B. will provide musicians for the future ceremonies,paying tribute to all those fallen soldiers who are laid to rest in small cemeteries (10-60 graves)where unfortunately due to the passage of time and location they become overlooked.The S.B.P.B. wish to Commemorate not only the individual soldier. or groups of soldiers but also the many,many Thousands of their Brothers in Arms who gave the ultimate sacrifice.

Ceremony and concert for the Tank Regiment and  2nd Lt A.Mackintosh


         Hommage to the 15th Btn CEF in Courcelette and Warvillers

Ceremony in Martinpuich                   Le Portel - Hommage to WW2                       Souchez - Sept 2013
for the 47th London Division                     Canadian soldiers 

      Tyneside Scottish Drum is now in Newcastle Museum
Reburial of two unknown soldiers            The drum which was presented to Lt Col John Catto RA at the ceremony    
in Woburn Abbey Cemeter                        in  Erquninghem- Lys in October 2012 has now been officially brought home
Cuinchy , 22 August 2013                         to Tyneside
On the 16th April 2013, the Tyneside Scottish Association paraded at Kingston Park TAC for a ceremony to entrust the Catto drum to 204 (Tyneside Scottish) Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers). The ceremony to return the Drum to the Tyneside Scottish was organised by 204 (Tyneside Scottish) Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers), and brought together serving Battery members, Tyneside Scottish Association, and Tyneside Scottish Cadets. Present at the ceremony was the President of the TSA, Colonel Tony Glenton, and the Commanding Officer 101 (Northumbrian) Regiment Royal Artillery (Volunteers). The Tyneside Scottish pipes and drums provided the musical accompaniment.

               After a journey that had taken 73 years, the Drum returned to Tyneside.


6 OCTOBER 2012

More than two years ago, Yves heard about a drum staying in the house of an old lady living in Frevent; after some checks it's now sure that the drum comes from the British Army and has been found in 1940 by the father of the lady, during retirement of British troops to Dunkerque.
Yves manages to convince the lady to sell the drum at a reasonable price in order to return it to the Regimental Museum of the Tyneside Scottish Regiment, located in Newcastle, North-East England. A metal plaque is attached to the drum, in memory of 2nd Lt W.B.Catto killed on 11 September 1916 in Flanders. In agreement with the Tyneside Scottish Association, the ceremony and the return of the drum took place on October 6 at Erquinghem / Lys at 15:00 in the presence of Lt Colonel Catto, Major Ian Jones, members of the family, cadets army and musicians of the SBPB ....

This has been a day to die on
              Now the day is almost done
                            Here the pipes will lay beside me
                                             Silent will the battle drum

                                                          Mark Knopfler Piper to the End

At the end of the ceremonies, and later during the Annual General Meeting of the Tyneside Scottish Association 
(10th October 2012, PM Y.Holbecq and the SBPB association  have been awarded as
"Associate member" of the
T.S Association.


Very emotional ceremony on this Saturday, October 6th, in presence of members of the
Tyneside Scottish Regiment and Lt. Col. John Catto , Grand nephew of 2nd Lt WBCatto,
during which
SBPB returned the drum.
Find the pictures
of the ceremony on the
photo / video web page






The following were made members during Operation Drum, and welcomed in their absence.

Lt Colonel J Catto RA, Mr John Allen. (Full members)

Pipe Major Yves Holbecq and the Somme Pipe Band. (Associate members)


Find the pics of October 14th for the "fête des louches" in Comines!




10th & 11th NOVEMBER
Iwuy and Valenciennes with the Cadets of Manchester




The Highlanders museum in Fort George, Inverness , Scotland displays a wonderful collection of military items from the Seeforths, the Cameron Highlanders, the Lovat Scouts and allied regiments from Canada, Australia, New Zealand and from the Gurkhas. http://www.thehighlandersmuseum.com

highlanders museum

The museum director, Capt. Mick Low and staff have recently offered an authentic ceremonial Broadsword to the Somme Battlefield Pipe Band; this sword belonged to an officer serving in the Seaforths killed in action in 1942. The donation of this wonderful broadsword is a symbol of the respect and friendship in which our Scottish friends hold for the SBPB.
It will be used on a regular basis during the memorial ceremonies in which the Somme Battlefield Pipe Band take part.

In addition to thanking Capt. Low and his staff, the SBPB wish to acknowledge the help given by Pipe Major George Neish and Ian Alexander for their assistance in the shipping of the broadsword.



  1989 / 2013   


      The SBPB, the first Pipe Band in the Somme, has enjoyed the history and music of Scotland for twenty-four years.
During this time, of course, members have left the band and others have joined, but it has always been absorbing and enjoyable while we learnt,   organized and performed. 
       During this rewarding adventure we have met so many people and travelled far and wide.
       We have visited many parts of France and have been abroad. We are known in Canada,   Australia and many other countries.
       Our wish is to dedicate our site and our association to all the British, Canadian, Australian veterans who served during the two World Wars…  We are proud and honored to have paid tribute to all those men. They belong to history forever and they will remain in our minds and our hearts.
       Many, many thanks must go to all the people who have supported us.
       A special “thank you” must go to Ian Alexander, the father of our band, Maurice Link, Andy Cameron,
George Neish, Bill Blacklaw, Ishy & Kenny Addison, Bill & Jim Mac Connachie, Douglas Harvey, Ian Alexander Jr, Charlie Claydon, Isabelle & Stewart Mac Rae, John & Marianne Sutherland, Anne and Jeremy Tawler .

       Additionally, a true comradeship has grown between the SBPB and the members of the 48th Holland Highlanders since 1999 and it has been a great pleasure to meet them on major remembrance events, such as the “Pas De Calais Libéré” , DDay in Normandy, and the Canadian ceremonies in Holten and Beaumont Hamel or Vimy.

        Thank you, also, to the families of our members. Without their support, nothing would be possible as the band performs at more than thirty events each year.



This stone engraved "48th Highlanders - Ross", was offered by Michel to our Dutch friends, so they can deliver it officialy to the 48th Highlanders of Canada Regiment, in the begining of November 2011, during the regiment foundation anniversary. Our Canadians friends were both amazed and delighted; the stone decorates nowadays thair regimental museum.

       arromanches 2011           

Arromanches , DDay ceremonies 2011                        TAILLETTE - Ardennes

Pipe Major Y.Holbecq playing as lone piper at Vimy Memorial
and poem written by him in memory of Piper Bill Millin


Bill Millin, the "mad piper" from Lord Lovat, left us this 18th of August, aged 88.
The men is gone but his extraordinary history will live for ever.
He won't see his monument from his living, but he knew that tis project will soon be a reality.
We will be there and honour his memory with those who worked so much for this project.


2009                                          2008
                Harpenden Highland Games                      Parade in Huntly, Aberdeenshire


ZONNEBEKE - Belgique 



Banner offered in 2006 to the SBPB by the Veterans of the Normandy Veterans Association
in appreciation of the loyalty of the SBPB for taking part of the DDay ceremonies in Arromanches




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