Skirl of pipes for blessing the tartan at St Andrew’s
St Andrew’s Turakina Presbyterian Church is holding a Kirkin ‘o’ the Tartan service this Sunday, October 14.
There’s an open invitation to anyone who enjoys wearing the tartan, or is of Scottish descent or has a love of the culture.
The tradition was started by the Rev Peter Marshall in New York in the 1940s, raising funds for the British war relief during World War II. Rev Marshall was originally from Coatbridge in Scotland.
Stories abound of the Kirkin’s roots being in days of the British Act of Proscription when wearing the kilt was banned in the Scottish highlands. In response, small pieces of tartan were brought to church to be secretly blessed.
This year’s event starts at 2pm on Sunday and will feature piper Callum Cameron.
Callum began learning the pipes in 2005 under the tuition of Marion Horsburgh at Scots College in Wellington, where he played for the Scots College Pipe Band.
In 2008, Callum joined the Manawatu¯ Scottish Society Pipe Band and after a season with them he took a two-year break and moved to Christchurch to study.
While still based in the South Island, he played for Manawatu¯ in the New Zealand national championships in 2012, 2013 and 2014. At the end of the 2014 season, he joined the Canterbury Caledonian Society Pipe Band and spent three seasons with their grade 2 band, and one with the then New Zealand champions in grade 1.
His involvement with piping continues through working on the committee for the Highland Piping Society of Canterbury, renowned for its annual Silver Chanter solo piping competition, and as a member of the Scottish Society of New Zealand Pipe Band which has just returned from the 2018 World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow, placing a respectable seventh in the world in Grade 3A.
Callum Cameron at the 2018 World Pipe Band Championships.