Bagpipes to be banned under proposed Glasgow 2014 rules


BAGPIPERS will be banned from playing outside Commonwealth Games venues if new plans are given the go ahead.

Musicians – who busk or play for free – could even face fines of up to £20,000 if they play traditional music in the streets.

Officials claim the regulations are needed to clamp down on illegal “street trading” to protect the “integrity” of Glasgow 2014.

Bagpipes could be banned if new Glasgow 2014 rules are passed
Bagpipes could be banned if new Glasgow 2014 rules are passed


But campaigners said banning bagpipers was “wrong” as it “contradicts the spirit of the Games”.

The Scottish Government published a consultation on the plans on Thursday.

It will affect individuals or organisations who have not signed an official corporate contract with Games’ organisers.

The consultation document states: “If somebody wishes to provide public entertainment (such as live music) for gain or reward or for free, then that will be classed as street trading.”

Unauthorised street trading, advertising and ticket touting are also targeted – those who are caught face merchandise seizures or financial penalties of up to £20,000.

Street traders and local advertisers will also be excluded from nearby official venues under measures designed to protect sponsors who have exclusive advertising rights.

The measures will apply for two weeks at all 17 venues hosting events next year, including Celtic Park, the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome and Hampden Park, as well as surrounding areas.

The ban also extends to areas reserved for official Games entertainment such as Glasgow Green, KelvingrovePark and George Square.

A squad of anti-trading officers will then patrol venues to make sure no one flouts the rules.



Robert Wallace, principal of the College of Piping in Glasgow, called on officials to re-think the proposal.

He said: “It would be quite wrong if busking was banned as such because it’s so much part of the country’s identity — it’s what people will come here to see.

“To class buskers, who represent a free and relaxed atmosphere, as street traders is daft.

“To then tie something in red tape as this will do is surely contradictory to the spirit of the Games.

“Plans that pipers had been making are not going to disappear and that’s a real shame.”

But officials claimed the ban was key in making the Games a “success” and said if anyone has any issues they should get involved in the consultation process.

Shona Robison, the Commonwealth Games Minister, said: “Regulating trading and advertising in the vicinity of the sports arenas ensures that we can protect the character and integrity of the Commonwealth Games and minimise disruption to local people or businesses.

“These regulations will allow Glasgow 2014 to control activity at an appropriate scale that allows the free flow of spectators and traffic to and from the Games venues.”

Ty Speer, deputy chief executive of Glasgow 2014, added: “We would encourage anyone with an interest in the regulations to engage with the consultation process and work with the Scottish government to make sure we have the proper rules in place to ensure the Games’ success.”


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  1. bagpipes are terror weapons and therefor should be left in the hands of the highland regiments to scare away the enemys of england

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