The purpose of this site is for information and a record of Gerry McCann's Blog Archives. As most people will appreciate GM deleted all past blogs from the official website. Hopefully this Archive will be helpful to anyone who is interested in Justice for Madeleine Beth McCann. Many Thanks, Pamalam

Note: This site does not belong to the McCanns. It belongs to Pamalam. If you wish to contact the McCanns directly, please use the contact/email details    

Queen's Own last pipe major Alasdair Gillies dies

Original Source: BBC: MONDAY 29 AUGUST 2011
29 August 2011 Last updated at 11:41

Alasdair Gillies taught piping in the USA after leaving the Army

Award winning pipe major Alasdair Gillies has died at the age of 47.

The former soldier was the last pipe major of the Queen's Own before its amalgamation with the Gordon Highlanders in the 1990s.

Following the merger, he was the first pipe major of the new battalion The Highlanders.

Glasgow born, he later spent some of his childhood in Ullapool. It is understood he had been suffering from ill health.

The piping gold medalist taught piping in the USA after leaving the Army.

Tributes have been paid to Mr Gillies on the Piping Times website.

In 2007, he composed a tune to mark 100 days since the disappearance of four-year-old Madeleine McCann in Portugal after being asked by the girl's family.

He played the music at the World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow that year.


Piping Times website.


P/M Alasdair Gillies has died

August 27th, 2011

The piping world will be shocked this morning to hear that one of the greatest pipers in modern times, P/M


Alasdair Gillies, has died suddenly aged 47. The news was conveyed to the Piping Times office by P/M Iain Morrison, Lewis, Alasdair’s mentor and guiding hand for many years. Iain had received the sad news from Alasdair’s son Norman. Winner of all the top awards in piping including both Gold Medals, Alasdair excelled at light music and his record at the Northern Meeting Former Winners MSR is unsurpassed. But it is as a person we remember him today – a thoroughly decent individual whose manner  was never affected by his brilliant musicianship. To young Norrie and the wider family we offer sincere condolences. Obituary to follow in the PT. For a full run down of this master piper’s career go to

Robert Wallace writes: What can one say about the death of Alasdair at so young an age? Those of us who knew him well are shocked to the core as will be those who were not so close to him. I will remember those magnificent performances at Inverness when he strode the platform in the Former Winners’ MSR like no other. The clarity of the fingerwork, the flowing expression, the easy, effortless, tuneful bagpipe. He well deserved the roar of the crowd at the end, not only from those in Queen’s Own ties. And so it went on  year after year: Silver Star – Alasdair Gillies, Silver Star – Alasdair Gillies. A measure of his greatness came when P/M Angus MacDonald, himself a doyen of the ‘big’ MSR, judged him at Eden Court in the early 90s. Fellow judge Lt. Col. David Murray turned to Angus and said: ‘That was something special; it reminded me of you in your heyday.’ ‘Me?’, said Angus, ‘I could never play like that.’

But Alasdair’s playing is not all I will remember of this wonderful piper. He was a genuine individual without airs. He knew how good he was but never lost the common touch. He was always willing to help young pipers and when I approached him about using his name to advertise the green tutor he did so unhesitatingly and without any suggestion of a fee.  He missed his father. They are united now, never again to part.


If anyone would like to leave a message of condolence then please feel free to do so in the comment section below.


Site Policy Contact details Sitemap Website created by © Pamalam