Gallus Glasgow N: the National Piping Centre

The National Piping Centre serves as a national and international centre of excellence for the Great Highland Bagpipe and its music. The building was formerly Old Cowcaddens Church, built in 1872, and now comprises a school with rehearsal rooms, an auditorium, the Museum of Piping, a reference library, conference facilities, a hotel and a restaurant. Quite a place!

The photos below were taken on a visit to the museum and library a few years ago and feature my friend, James Beaton, the Piping Centre’s Librarian, playing his bagpipes.

Tomorrow’s letter, O, is another musical venue.


35 thoughts on “Gallus Glasgow N: the National Piping Centre

  1. Celine Jeanjean April 16, 2015 / 11:47

    Haha,when I read piping centre I didn’t think this would be a bagpipe centre!!


      • Celine Jeanjean April 16, 2015 / 12:32

        For some reason I thought it would have something to do with pipettes and be a laboratory of some kind. I’m surprised my mind didn’t immediately go to the cake option – I’m normally all about the food. 😉


          • Sarah Ferguson April 16, 2015 / 20:21

            I didn’t think it would be bagpipes, either! Except I was thinking pipes like in a house – the sort your water comes in. Of course, it could be the smoking kind as well!


  2. joylovestravel April 16, 2015 / 12:43

    Love bagpipes – this will have to go on my list!! My father played them and we frequently went to the world championships in Glasgow so this would be a great place to visit.


    • Anabel Marsh April 16, 2015 / 16:55

      It offers it all – stay there (though I’ve not tried that). eat there and visit the museum. And it’s just across from the Theatre Royal so more culture on your doorstep.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Nadine April 16, 2015 / 14:20

    This was unexpected! It’s great that this incredible art is being preserved.


  4. Sherri Lackey April 16, 2015 / 16:21

    I would like to visit that place. When my father died we were surprised to find someone who knew how to play the bagpipes at his funeral. One of the unexpected things to find while living in rural Montana here in the U.S. Sort of like the time I found out that some of descendants of Maria and Georg von Trapp, who inspired The Sound of Music, live in Kalispell, Montana just over the mountains from where we live. They are carrying on the singing family tradition.


    • Anabel Marsh April 16, 2015 / 16:45

      Amazing! I think the bagpipes are really hard to play – takes a lot of commitment.


  5. Eli April 16, 2015 / 19:54

    In my head- there is nothing more Scottish than bagpipes ? – so of course there had to be a National piping centre:-) Great building:-)


    • Anabel Marsh April 16, 2015 / 20:38

      They are very typical – we hear them a lot, especially in summer when the championships are on. Some pipers practice on the playing fields St the end of our road.


  6. johnmarkmiller April 16, 2015 / 20:22

    I do love the sound of bagpipes! It’s such a haunting sound to me..


  7. cleemckenzie April 16, 2015 / 22:24

    I imagine walking past this place during a rehearsal. What a treat that would be.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Birgit April 17, 2015 / 00:54

    I was thinking water pipes-lol-This is much better and bagpipes are one of my favourites. That is a nice building


    • Anabel Marsh April 17, 2015 / 07:36

      Never occurred to me that people would have so many ideas about what sort of piping I was going to talk about!


  9. kimlhine April 17, 2015 / 02:34

    hello Anabel.
    just pooping in to say hello from the A-Z challenge,
    fellow blogger
    Kim in Australia


  10. Alex Hurst April 17, 2015 / 03:32

    I love that there is a bagpipe center, though I shouldn’t be surprised. It’s a beautiful building. I bet the acoustics are amazing!


    • Anabel Marsh April 17, 2015 / 07:40

      Lots of signs about wearing bagpipe-safe earplugs in the practice areas though!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. lostforwords101 April 17, 2015 / 04:17

    Listening to a trio of a father and two sons playing bagpipes was one of the highlights of my Scotland visit. I am traveling to your part of the world very soon and I am excited to use my tartan shawl from Glasgow 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh April 17, 2015 / 07:42

      You might need it! It’s still quite cold here in the evenings. Hope you enjoy your visit.


  12. clarabellerant April 17, 2015 / 08:12

    I grew up close to Boston and bagpipes were a staple at any community event. I MISS them here in LA 😦

    You can find me here:


  13. vannillarock April 18, 2015 / 00:31

    When I mentioned to my husband this was your choice for N he said straight off the bat’you can stay there’. Who knew ?! – clearly you did. Nice choice, Anabel.


    • Anabel Marsh April 18, 2015 / 07:38

      I remember getting a tour, including the hotel, when it first opened. Maybe it was Doors Open Day. Not been to that bit since, but I can highly recommend the restaurant.


  14. Lori L MacLaughlin May 1, 2015 / 17:47

    There’s nothing like the sound of a bagpipe. We had a piper play at our wedding and at my husband’s funeral service. We used to go to all the Scottish festivals around just to hear them. We even tried learning to play them once, but sounded mostly like we were kicking geese. I still love to hear them, though now with a touch of sadness.


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