THEIR high-pitched skirl has put fear into the hearts of Scotland’s enemies and sent sensitive tourists reaching for the cotton wool.No comments will be posted without a full name and location, see the policy.
Now, however, the bagpipes are to be quietened by an edict from Brussels.
From this month, pipers must adhere to strict volume limits or risk breaking European Union health and safety laws. Bands have been ordered to tone down or wear earplugs to limit noise exposure to 85 decibels.
Typically, a pipe band played at full volume peaks at 122 decibels outdoors, noisier than the sound of either a nightclub or a chainsaw, which rises to 116 decibels.
The prospect of more subdued bagpipes will be welcomed by some, but musicians have warned performances will suffer.
Pipe majors claim it is virtually impossible to play quietly or to tune a band when the musicians are wearing earplugs, raising the prospect of a cacophony at showcase events such as the Edinburgh military tattoo.
The rules in effect limit practice without earplugs to about 15 minutes a day.
Sunday, 20 April 2008
Pipe down! Brussels slaps a noise order on heart of Scotland
This is not an April Fool. If it is true, then I would say the only fools around here are the ones who brought us under the authority of Brussels in the first place and we who go on accepting it: