News Articles

Dutch Highlander pipe and drum band checks out Ontario

Modeled after Toronto areaís 48th Highlanders

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

BRANTFORD, Ontario - A Dutch pipe and drum band, modeled after the one of the 48th Highlanders of Canada, which helped liberate the bandís hometown of Apeldoorn, was scheduled to play in various Ontario cities, including Brantford and Burlington.

The 48th Highlanders of Holland Pipe and Drum band says it is visiting Canada to recognize and honour those members of the Canadian forces who lost their lives liberating the City of Apeldoorn in the Second World War.

The central Dutch town was liberated by Canadian soldiers, predominantly from the Toronto-based 48th Highlanders of Canada, in hard fought battles in April 1945. Apeldoornís pipe and drum band was founded in 1991, after seeing Canadian bands taking part in the cityís national liberation celebrations the year before. The band is wearing almost-identical uniforms and featuring the same tartans worn by the Canadians.

Canadian Military Heritage Museum's Rick Shaver told Brantford city councilors that the Dutch 48th Highlanders band is accepted as being one of the best of its kind across Europe.


The Apeldoorn bandís visit to Brantford was scheduled for November 4, the day proclaimed Brantford Day by city council. After its arrival at the Armories, the 48th Highlanders of Holland Pipe and Drum band will proceed to the local cenotaph for an official ceremony with official remarks, anthems and wreath-laying. Official hosts for the day are Brantford Mayor Chris Friel, Brant County Mayor Ron Eddy and the Canadian Military Heritage Museumís Rick Shaver.

In additional to regular international forays, the 48th Highlanders of Holland band is also a fixture at Apeldoornís annual parades commemorating the end of the war and in services held at Holtenís Canadian War Cemetery that holds the remains of over 1,300 Canadians who died in the final stages of the Second World War.

In Burlington, the band arranged a serenade for Dutch-Canadian community organizer Jack VanderLaan ( at his menís wear outlet Filmanís ( on Mount Royal Plaza where a few doors over DUCA has its local branch. VanderLaan took the lead in organizing Canada Netherlands Friendship Days for over a decade and was also instrumental in twinning Burlington with Apeldoorn. In addition to the visit by the band, various other groups visit each otherís city on a regular basis.