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Geddes tradition continues

The Jeppe Pipe Band hosted the 43rd Annual Geddes Cup Competition on Saturday the 19th of October. The event is one of its kind in the South African piping and drumming community.

This year’s winners were as follows – Piping: Timothy Lincoln. Snare Drumming: Connor Holz

In 1949 Robert (Bobby) Geddes, a piper in the Jeppe Pipe Band, won two prizes at the Royal Scottish Gathering – the first of a number of champions to come out of the band and the school.

Les Waskis, who went on to become Pipe Major of the Witwatersrand Rifles Pipe Band, took over the reins as pipe tutor of the Jeppe Pipe Band in 1965. Stan Hankey, was the Master-in-Charge of the cadet detachment at the school.

The pipe band was considered a part of the cadet division and, therefore, Stan was also the master-in-charge of the band.

In an attempt to improve the standard of playing of the individual members of the band and, to allow them to get the feeling of playing solo in front of an audience and a judge, Les Waskis, together with Bobby Geddes, created the Geddes Cup evening in 1968.

Bobby Geddes donated a trophy, to be presented to the best piper on the night, and Stan Hankey managed all the logistics of the event from the school’s point of view.

A side point worth adding is that Bobby Geddes was blind – as the result of a scuffle after school one day when waiting to catch a train home after school. He still continued to play the pipes, however, until old age prevented him from doing so. He was also a respected solo piping judge in his time.

Traditionally, the band leaders for the following season are announced at the Geddes Cup evening. The 2020 leadership team is as follows: Pipe Major – Brett Harzon; Band Captain – Timothy Lincoln.