In October of 2000 a proposal was presented to the area Police Chiefs recommending the formation of a Greater Victoria Police Pipe Band. The mission of this regional band would be to foster inter organizational camaraderie, enhance the profile of police within the community, and promote appreciation for pipe band music. The band would be a performance/duty band consisting of police members (retired and active) from the Greater Victoria municipal police departments and the RCMP; and complimented by civilian players and instructors. The proposal was approved and an executive was formed consisting of police officers and civilians from the Greater Victoria area.
One of the first functions of the executive was to find a pipe major with the skill and knowledge to form such a band. After an extensive search, the executive selected Mr. James Troy of Victoria as the band’s first pipe major. P/M Troy is a highly respected and experienced musician, having previously been the founding pipe major of the City of Victoria Pipe Band and, as such, has performed in a number of world championship pipe band competitions. In addition P/M Troy brought with him a group of experienced pipe and drum instructors, all former members of the City of Victoria Pipe Band.
Badge of The Greater Victoria Police Pipe Band
In recognition of the bands multi-jurisdictional nature, the band designed a Badge that reflects the regional theme. The badge’s basic design is that of the Canadian College of Heraldry standard for police badges as represented in the Cities of Vancouver and New Westminster’s new police badges, and the great seal of the Crown Colony of Vancouver Island. This seal was gazetted in 1849 for the colony and de-gazetted when Vancouver Island joined British Columbia in 1866. It now resides in the British Museum. The seal consists of the wand of Neptune, God of the Sea, Mercury’s wand of commerce, the pine cone representing Vancouver Island Forests, and the beaver for the Hudson Bay Company on an island set in the sea.
Tartan of The Greater Victoria Police Pipe Band
Instead of adopting an existing tartan the band decided to create its own history by designing a tartan of its own. The tartan’s blue and red is representative of the police organizations in the Greater Victoria area. The white stripe is significant in that it denotes Queen Victoria’s colonial police force. The colonial police predated any other police organization on Vancouver Island.