Robert Mathieson is headed with the SFU Pipe Band this weekend to the World Bagpipe Championships in Scotland.

SFU pipers eye world trophy

When the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band heads to Scotland for the World Bagpipe Championships this weekend, they’ll be bringing a little Scottish ammunition – piper Robert Mathieson

When the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band heads to Scotland for the World Bagpipe Championships this weekend, they’ll be bringing a little Scottish ammunition – piper Robert Mathieson.

The former pipe major of rival Scottish band The House of Edgar Shotts & Dykehead – with five world championships under his own belt – came out of retirement as pipe major earlier this year to become a piper with SFU’s band.

“This is huge in the piping world,” says Surrey Pipe Sergeant Jack Lee. “It would be the equivalent of the Canucks signing Sidney Crosby.”

Mathieson says he grabbed the opportunity after a conversation with SFU Pipe Major Terry Lee, following his retirement as pipe major with Shotts & Dykehead last fall.

“I’m thrilled to have Robert, a living legend, join our band,” says Terry, whose relationship with the fellow pipe major goes back to the early 1980s.

“I asked him what he was planning to do next, and whether he’d consider coming to Canada to do something fresh,” says Terry Lee. “At the same time, I was aware of how we could take advantage of the ideas and creativity he could offer.”

It didn’t take long for an answer. “Terry asked me, ‘would you fancy a turn with us?’ It took me all of two seconds to decide,” Mathieson says, calling SFU’s band “a serial tour de force” in the pipe band world.

Since late spring he has made three trips from Scotland to perform and teach with the band. “This isn’t about being parachuted in for the world championships,” says Mathieson, who, at 52, has been piping for four decades. “I’m here to join the band. I’m in it for the long haul, not just for the one season.”

Mathieson, from Hamilton, Scotland, is one of several new band members and one of two Scots in the band. Drummer Gordon Lee of Kirkcaldy, Fife, is a regular prizewinner and finalist in world solo drumming championships. Another European drummer, Ian Lawson hails from Armagh, Northern Ireland.

The SFU band – with Mathieson in town – is finishing up its practice schedule before heading for Scotland later this week. Practice continues next week in Stirling, Scotland before the world championships in Glasgow on Saturday, Aug. 13.

The championships will be streamed live by the BBC at

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

UPDATE: Pedestrian dies after being hit by bus in uptown White Rock

Collision occurred July 3 at North Bluff Road and Johnston Road

Intent of killing at centre of Surrey man’s West Kelowna murder trial

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Allison Beames is anticipated to return with her decision in August

PHOTOS: South Surrey tractor project evokes ‘$1-million smile,’ helps connect neighbours

Retired Surrey firefighter Ron Henze began project for friend’s dad to fill time during pandemic

Surrey man facing charges related to child pornography

Elazar Reshef, 52, has worked in the Delta School District

13 new B.C. COVID-19 cases, Langley Lodge outbreak ends

Health care outbreaks down to four, 162 cases active

Greater Vancouver home sales start to tick up, with prices holding steady

Residential sales last month reached 2,443, a 64.5 per cent jump from May

Langley Lodge’s deadly outbreak declared over

Fraser Health and long-term care home administrator confirm Friday declaration

Alberta health minister orders review into response after noose found in hospital in 2016

A piece of rope tied into a noose was found taped to the door of an operating room at the Grande Prairie Hospital in 2016

B.C.’s major rivers surge, sparking flood warnings

A persistent low pressure system over Alberta has led to several days of heavy rain

B.C.’s Indigenous rights law faces 2020 implementation deadline

Pipeline projects carry on as B.C. works on UN goals

Search continues for person seen floating in Coquihalla River in Hope

Rescuers halted the search Thursday night as darkness fell

‘Mind boggling’: B.C. man $1 million richer after winning Lotto 6/49 a second time

David O’Brien hopes to use his winnings to travel and of course keep playing the lottery

Most Read