I read in
the papers that there is a
fear that Morris Dancing will die out because younger people aren't
interested in it. This would be a pity: it's been a traditional part of
country life for many years. I was actually involved with folk dancing
for a time when I was about 18: I played the violin in a small folk
dance band in the open air round Stratford-on-Avon and at a few dance
halls. We actually broadcast once - one item in a pre-recorded program
of folk music: I did manage to hear the transmission. It sounded pretty
rough, to be honest.
Some of the band members were also in the
Morris Dance troupe, so I saw it done quite a lot - dances with
handkerchiefs, sticks, and 'swords' (flat metal with wooden handles)
which would end up interlocked in the star shape which was the badge of
the Folk Dance Society.
This photo shows a troupe - probably the
same one, though I don't know whether any of my friends were still in
it by then - some eight years later, in August 1968 outside Anne
Hathaway's Cottage at Shottery, near Stratford.