Piper On Parade is Regional Winner of the Scottish Wedding Awards 2014
Congratulations to our friend and colleague, Dougie Watson, aka the Piper On Parade, who is the Regional Winner of the Scottish Wedding Awards 2014. A well deserved award for someone so devoted to the pipes and here our Inverness piper tells his story about that special day.
Well of course I was aware of such awards and followed them closely last year, my first full year in the Wedding Piper /Event business.
Then this year as they came around I wondered would I be nominated, but honestly felt that although some of my brides may have some positive things to say about me, I felt it was a long shot to be in with “a shout” as we say in the Highlands, and there were people in the business who had a lot more weddings under their belts than I.
Then some three weeks after the date when nominations for awards may be received, I answered a call from the awards organisers to say that I, Piper on Parade had been short listed as a finalist in the North West Region (Highland) for the Entertainment category.
To say I was surprised was an understatement. How did that happen? I was invited to attend a black tie Gala Dinner at the Crown Plaza Hotel, Glasgow on Tuesday 25 February 2014 where presentations to Regional and ultimately National winners would be made, that said I felt a winner already, being a finalist felt good, and that was enough for me, a pleasant surprise. I was also very grateful to those happy couples who must have taken the time to write in and favourably comment on my performance, dress and musicality when taking part in their Big Day.
I contacted Creative Oceanic the event organisers and confirmed my attendance and that I would be accompanied by my eldest daughter Megan. It would have been really lovely if my wife Linda could have attended, as she is an integral part of Piper on Parade, but unfortunately family commitments clashed.
I travelled down from the Highlands that morning on the train having met up with Mel and June from Wedding Belles, Annie from Tiger Lilly Flowers, Eileen Solan, from Eileen Solan Makeup, and Lyndsey Macgregor form Lark and Lilly Designs. To say it was a “Hoot” is not an exaggeration, my face was sore from laughing long before we reached Glasgow, everyone was on a high and all finalists in various categories.
Having arrived in Glasgow and transferred to the Crown Plaza I met up with Megan who had flown in from Bristol for the evening, it was great to see her and we had a leisurely lunch where I introduced her to all the Girls from the North.
Following lunch we all agreed to meet up again at 6.30 pm in readiness for the event to begin at 7.30 pm. We all arrived in our finery, with all the ladies looking lovely, make up complete. Yours truly was dressed in a Prince Charlie jacket and Guards bow tie, wearing Black Stewart tartan kilt. We all looked the part.
As it turned out the organisers had spread all the attendees across some 40 tables no doubt ensuring we all mixed and mingled, although I felt really lucky when I realised I was at the same table as Mel and June, the craic was like the train times 10, absolutely brilliant!!
The night started with a singer and straight into the presentation of the first award, before I knew it the third award was being presented i.e. the Entertainment award. The finalists in the North West Region were called out and our names appeared on large screens behind the stage. It seemed to happen all so quickly but I was called out as the Winner!!! Yes me Piper on Parade, again the same thought, how did that happen? Needless to say it was a late night, and the train journey North the following day a lot calmer, but satisfying.