A Brief History of the 8 Wing Pipes & Drums
Officially formed in January 1963, 8 Wing Pipes and Drums is a Canadian Armed Forces Military Support Band, comprised of members of the Regular Force, Reserve Force, and civilian volunteers from local and outlying communities in and around the Quinte West region. Its primary role is to support 8 Wing and its lodger Units in ceremonial and official functions, but the band also supports many civil and community events in the surrounding area. The band has also thrilled audiences around the globe, including performances in the USA, Russia, Europe, and Scotland. At home, the band is a local fixture, regularly performing at schools, seniors' homes, and a host of civic and military events each year.
Solo pipers from the band are a frequent sight at community events throughout Belleville, Trenton, and the surrounding areas. On the base, the Pipe Major (or his designate) performs at mess dinners, Change of Appointment parades, Honourary Colonel Investitures, and a variety of other functions supporting military tradition. Additionally, the Pipe Major holds the solemn honour of piping for our fallen soldiers, sailors, airmen, and airwomen, whose return home is marked by their Repatriation Ceremony.
The band also has a long and storied history of success in competition, both in Canada and abroad. They recently returned to the competition field, winning the Grade 4 North American Championships back-to-back in 2017 and 2018, winning Ontario Grade 4 Champion Supreme in 2018, and placing 4th
in Grade 3 at the North American Championships in 2019.
Would You Like to Join the Band?
8 Wing Pipes and Drums is always accepting new members and students, and we welcome volunteers of all age and experience levels. Members of the band receive professional, full-time instruction on a very flexible schedule. For military personnel serving at 8 Wing, active membership in the band is also classed as an official Secondary Duty. Though the band is categorised as a volunteer band, the Pipe Major and Drum Instructor are Regular Force musicians, whose full-time duty is leading, training, and administering the band. Their passion for their craft, and professional commitment to the band, ensures that it is always ready to serve, when called upon by 8 Wing or the surrounding community.
The 8 Wing Pipes & Drums are currently under the direction of Pipe Major (Sgt) Josh McFarlane, and Drum Instructor (Sgt) Mark Passmore.
If you are interested in booking 8 Wing Pipes and Drums for a performance, please fill out and return the 8 Wing Bands Request Form
Sgt Josh McFarlane
613-392-2811 ext. 7282
Sgt Mark Passmore
613-392-2811 ext. 3387