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Scots rule at this year's military spectacular
The result of the Scottish independence referendum was being closely watched by the organisers of this year's Birmingham International Tattoo which takes place at the National Indoor Arena on November 29 and 30.
The team coordinating the annual event has chosen Scotland as this year's theme with the Edinburgh-based Band of the Royal Regiment of Scotland booked to headline.
Scottish spectacular: Birmingham International Tattoo
Tattoo Producer Norman Rogerson admits: "We are all very pleased that the Scots chose to remain as part of the UK as the Royal Regiment of Scotland Band are fantastic ambassadors for Great Britain as well as Scotland and will perform alongside bands from Poland, Belarus and Austria at this year's Birmingham Tattoo."
Norman, who was bandmaster of the famous Scottish Band of the Black Watch for many years, adds: "This year's fantastic line-up is one of the very best in our 26 year history and will be a fitting tribute to all those who fought in both World Wars and those who have served in the armed forces over the last 100 years – those from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales plus our allies."
Welcome visitors: Central Band of the Belarus Armed Forces
This year's special event also brings together marching bands from Poland, Belarus, Austria and, nearer to home, our own British forces.
Representing Poland for the first time at the Tattoo will be the Ceremonial Band of the Polish Army. Joining them will be the Central Band of the Belarus Armed Forces with dancers and vocal soloists from The Bolshoi and, from Austria, the Lacken Band.
The Band of the Royal Regiment of Scotland and the Royal Naval Volunteer Band will demonstrate their musical and marching skills. They will be joined by the Centenary Massed Pipes and Drums of over 100 pipers and the National Youth Marching Band which combines seven of the UK's finest youth musical groups.
Marching skills: The Band of the Royal Regiment of Scotland
Complementing the music of the massed bands will be the thrills of the exciting displays including the RMRNC Inter-Service Field Gun Competition, featuring the Royal Navy, Army and RAF, which will prove how both strength and agility are needed to control the heavy guns as they race each other.
Completing the spectacle are over 100 Massed Standard Bearers and the Royal British Legion Riders Motorcycle Display Team.
For the spectacular grand finale all the performers will be joined by the Royal Air Force Cosford Queen's Colour and Escort to perform Land of Hope and Glory and the closing ceremony.