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Seil crofter DJ MacDougall is picking up his pipes to raise £1,000 for charity.
DJ last played a note with Oban Pipe Band before Covid, so this fundraiser for the Easdale branch of Royal British Legion Scotland will warm him up for when band practise resumes – in more ways than one.
He is taking on the challenge of marching, while playing the pipes, almost five miles from the Oban side of the Bridge Over The Atlantic down to the seafront at Ellenabeich.
Plans are for him to be accompanied by supporters, including the Easdale branch’s standard bearer, on August 28 collecting donations along the road.
A justgiving page has also been set up at
DJ’s piping challenge will be on the same day the branch usually has its annual sale.
Ron Hetherington, who is chairman of the branch that will be celebrating its centenary next year, said hopes are pinned on DJ to bring in £1,000 or more to help make up for the sale being cancelled due to Covid.
‘It’s been very difficult since Covid. We’ve not been able to hold the normal things we would’ve done. By now we would’ve had our book sale, been planning a summer dance and looking forward to the sale that usually we have on August 28, the day DJ is now doing his walk for us.
‘It would be lovely to smash his £1,000 target. Normally our annual sale brings in between £1,200 and £1,500 on the day. That’s a big chunk of money for us. On average distribute roughly £5,000 a year to forces charities which isn’t bad for a very small branch like us,’ he said.
DJ was just nine years old when he started playing the pipes. He was taught at Easdale Primary School and his dad is also a piper, so he is keeping up a family tradition.
He was invited to be the official piper for the Easdale branch a couple of years ago and said: ‘I gladly accepted. It’s an absolute honour.’
Some of DJ’s family in the past have also had links to the Royal British Legion Scotland.
DJ is hoping for dry conditions on the day of the walk, not too hot though ‘but a wee bit of sunshine would be ideal,’ he said.
‘I’m not entirely sure how long it will take, maybe two hours. I need to do a bit of practice. It’s an endurance challenge for sure but I’ll keep going as far as I can, maybe with the odd pit stop but I’ll definitely be playing as I cross the bridge and when I get to Easdale,’ he added.
DJ might even be taking requests. ‘Up-tempo ones preferably,’ he said.