Balmoral Park service offers special feature

It is not always easy to make it to the Anzac Day dawn service, which is why a pair of bagpipes could be heard coming from a Dunedin residential village later in the morning.

About 40 Balmoral Park residents and one fluffy white dog gathered in the sun at 11am yesterday to pay respects at the service.

Organiser Jennifer Neumann said the village had residents up to 95 years old, which made it difficult for many to attend the 6am service in town.

The tradition had started in 2020, as Anzac Day coincided with the initial lockdown.

It had always been a small meeting with some Anzac biscuits, but never before had the residents had a private performance, she said.

The recent addition of Myra Wells brought the service to the next level.

Performing for the residents of Balmoral Park in Dunedin for a late Anzac Day service are...
Performing for the residents of Balmoral Park in Dunedin for a late Anzac Day service are resident Myra Wells (80), Pat Adams (73) and Earl Wylie (80). PHOTO: STEPHEN JAQUIERY

The 80-year-old moved into the park 10 months ago and regularly practices her bagpipes in the afternoon.

She said it was a great privilege to be able bring the service to those who would not normally be able to attend.

She had been greatly enjoying her time at the village so far.

"The Queen’s got Balmoral Castle — well I’ve got Balmoral Park."

Mrs Wells played alongside two of her long-time bandmates, piper Pat Adams and drummer Earl Wylie.

The three originally played together in the now disbanded Taieri Band, but had been playing together for about 50 years.

She performed for the first time at 15 years old and till loved playing music today.

-- wyatt.ryder@odt.co.nz

 

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