Pipe Banner for Major William Douglas
Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders

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    A pipe banner is a decorative flag for the Scottish Highland bagpipes. It is used when a piper performs at high-profile or State occasions where the pipe banner will be tied to the bass drone of her or his bagpipes. It is a rather expensive handmade item embroidered with bullion threads.

    In the army, company officers have pipe banners. Details vary according to the tradition of each regiment. Usually the regimental crest is on one side and either the arms or crest of the company officer (if armigerous) on the other.

    In civil life, lairds, chieftains, and chiefs are those entitled to pipe banners which either display their arms over the whole area or display the whole coat of arms with crest and supporters. The former is the older form.

    A chief has three pipers, a chieftain two, and other lairds one. Only the senior of two or three pipers bears the the pipe banner. They are not permissible by professional pipers as a piece of meaningless show, i.e., when not appearing for a person entitled to a pipe banner.

    This pipe banner was carried by the D Company piper on ceremonial parades, and at regimental Mess Dinners, circa 1982.

    Note that the Douglas crest can be seen more clearly on this coat of arms...

    The regimental tartan is 'Government Tartan'; the personal side is on a yellow background, the company colour.

     

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    Sources for this article include:

    •  Chief MacBain of MacBean (sic)



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    Last modified: Sunday, 02 June 2019