April 2008 1
Two of the band’s pipers and the band’s Youth development officer Gary Wallace are just back from a short trip to China. They were representing the Fire Service and playing at the opening ceremony of a huge new leisure centre. This was being named after Jim Smith, a retired firefighter from Glasgow. We were guests of the Kong family who became firm friends with Jim over a number of years.
The band members also visited the main fire station in the city and met with head firemaster, the mayor of the city and other selected dignitaries. An impromptu performance was also given at the official dinner ahead of the opening ceremony which was well received by all!
We would like to thank both Jim Smith and Mr Kong Ran for their exceptional support and hospitality whilst we were with them.
The leisure centre is in Jining, a city with an 8 million population. This is situated in the Shandong Province which has a friendship agreement with the Scottish Government.