From performing for Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, to performing alongside Paul McCartney, the Delta Police Pipe Band has travelled the world to share their gift of music.
And as of June, this year marks the band’s 50th anniversary.
What started out in 1971 with just members of the Delta Police Department, the Delta Police Pipe Band has since bloomed to include police officers, first responders and civilians to make up approximately 50 current members today.
“The band started two years before I joined, and I feel proud to be a member and to represent the police department and Delta, the municipality, and we also represent Canada when we’re overseas,” says Gregor Hall, Sergeant Bass Drummer, retired DPD and the band’s longest serving member. “When I joined [the Delta Police Department], I was told they were forming a pipe band. I was asked at my interview if I played an instrument, and I said no, but I was willing to learn. So, I think that’s why I was hired.”
From participating in local parades to touring through North America, the UK and Europe, the pipe band was forced to halt their in-person practices, performances and travelling when the pandemic crashed down on them.
Corporal Side Drummer Taryn Marcotte, who was the first woman to have joined the band back in 2006, says though the pandemic has taken a toll on the band’s performance-readiness, they look forward to getting back out there to do what they love most – entertaining.
“I’m not sure when we finally get together again, as a full band, how many members we have left because of all this, but it will continue, and we will get new members and we will continue to grow,” she says.
Piper and President of the Delta Police Pipe Band Gary Brookes, who joined in 2006, also emphasizes the band’s resilience.“Fifty years is a long time for a pipe band to survive and grow – we’ve tripled in size since way back when – and I want to make sure that recognition is given. A huge thank you to all the members that we have now, and all the members that were there in the years prior who built the band and created our reputation and volunteered countless, countless hours that made us what we are,” he says.