Bearsden piper hits all the right notes

John McLeod
John McLeod

A GLOBETROTTING piper has help raise much needed cash after performing a carol concert on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral.

John McLeod from Bearsden was helping to raise money for Cancer Research UK as part of the pipe band he is a member of that is sponsored by ScottishPower.

The prestigious biennial event, which took place before Christmas, saw a group of pipers performing a number of seasonal favourites, which also featured performances from some of the country’s most exceptional musical talent such as The Band of the Scots Guards, Joan Rodgers CBE, Robert Murray, Christopher Maltman and Sir John Tomlinson.

John said: “It was a real honour to be asked to play at St Paul’s Cathedral and to be able to support the valuable work CRUK do. As ambassadors for ScottishPower it’s important that the band do what they can to help raise funds or awareness for this worthy charity”.

The pipe has been playing since the age of 10 and has travelled all over the world with the band for over 22 years. His passion for his hobby has clearly been an inspiration to his son Cameron who is now playing with the Milngavie Pipe Band.

Looking back on some of the highlights of more than two decades, John said: “Some of the highlights for me were playing at the Pope’s Christmas Concert at the Vatican in 2002, where we shared the bill with Lionel Ritchie. We also performed on stage with Haley Westenra at the 75th Royal Variety Performance in 2003.”

In November, the band travelled to Ourense in northern Spain where they performed at a special twinning ceremony with the local Galician Pipe Band, before playing a sell-out concert to over 400 people.

Ann Loughrey, head of corporate social responsibility for ScottishPower, said: “We are very proud of the hard work and dedication shown by all members of the band and grateful of their time and effort to support Cancer Research UK at their Christmas Carol Concert.”

ScottishPower announced a three year partnership with CRUK and to date, through its customers and staff, has raised over £1million.