THE WORCESTER FIRE BRIGADE PIPES AND DRUMS were founded in October 1994 when Firefighter Jim McClune and Worcester Kiltie Band member Bill McGinnes, were discussing the possibilities of having a drummer to march with the Worcester Fire Department during parades in order to keep everyone marching in step. Soon after that discussion McClune, along with Firefighters Steve Favulli, and Mark Whalen, developed the protocols that would give the Worcester Fire Department its first marching Pipe and Drum Corps. Three other Firefighters were soon recruited. At the end of six months the number had grown to fifteen and by the end of the first year, there were thirty-one members of the Worcester Fire Department taking lessons every Tuesday night for two hours. The Pipe Section was taught by former Worcester Kiltie Band member William McGinnes. The Drum Section was divided into two divisions, the Snare Drummers were taught by Peter McGinnes, William’s son. The Tenor Drummers and Bass Drummers were taught by Matt Hamilton, also a former member of the Worcester Kiltie Band. Just as things were starting to come together, William McGinnes passed away, leaving the band without a pipe instructor. It was at that time, Neil Gow (a friend of William McGinnes from the Worcester Kiltie Band), stepped forward to instruct the raw talent that had started to play the bagpipes together. Making sure that strict form and proper procedures were always adhered to, Neil is mostly responsible for making the WORCESTER FIRE BRIGADE PIPES AND DRUMS what they are today. Peter McGinnes stepped down as the Snare Drum instructor and was replaced by Chris Greenlece, also a former member of the Worcester Kiltie Band.
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