Reports/Photos

11 February 2024

 

31 dancers arrived at Samlesbury on Sunday to enjoy Ian Jones’ calling and the music of Kendal Green for an afternoon of dances, some old, some new, some simple, some not so simple, but all well worth doing. Whatever was in the air, this was a happy afternoon, a fun afternoon, and an afternoon that had us all leave with a spring in our step and a smile on our face. Our sincere thanks to Ian and Kendal Green for an excellent afternoon.


14 January 2024

 

Folk North West’s meetings intentionally create a workshop environment where things are not always perfect and right first time and some dances need work, be it from the caller, from the musicians and from the dancers too. So it was on Sunday! Twenty-three dancers headed to Samlesbury for an interesting and challenging programme lead by Norman Bearon, ably supported by Denise and Sally. Together we worked though Norman’s programme of dance and together we enjoyed the complexities of some, the difficulties of others, and the sheer pleasure of eventually getting the dances right! Long may this approach continue; well done to everyone who took part!

10 December 2023

With snow having caused the cancellation of Ian Jones’ Endmoor session the previous week, 31 dancers headed for Samlesbury on 10 December to enjoy Kendal Green’s music supporting Bernie Culkin who lead the dancing for the afternoon. With a Christmas  themed programme of dances we were challenged both physically and mentally with a short break at tea time where we could enjoy Yuletide fruit cake lovingly prepared for us by Lorna, and mince pies too! A thoroughly enjoyable afternoon as can be seen from photographs elsewhere on the website. We look forward to January when Norman Bearon will put down his violin and lead the dance, accompanied by his family of musicians.

12 November 2023


Thirty four dancers arrived at Samlesbury in November to figure their way through a collection of dances lead by Trevor Monson with music from Denise and Norman, today joined for the first time at FNW by another of their talented family, Sally. These sessions are workshops where callers can work through more complex, more interesting dances and today was no exception – much to the enjoyment of those who came.

 

Next month, on 10 December, Bernie Culkin will be leading the dancing with Kendal Green providing the music – another interesting and challenging afternoon, no doubt! As we agreed at the AGM we’ll NOT be having a Jacob’s Join – it’s an afternoon for dance, not eating!

 

We look forward to seeing you there – Sunday 10 December at 2.00pm, Bernie Culkin and Kendal Green.

8th October 2023


Our new season of dance got off to a flying start with Andrew Shaw leading the dancing; not only did we learn the dances but Andrew’s in-depth knowledge of the history of his dances lead us through kings and queens of England, through the playtime antics of them and their youngsters and even as far as boatmen on the Thames. Andrew recounts this history with detail and humour and it all adds to a thoroughly interesting and fun afternoon. Music, all acoustic once again, came from Kendal Green – Ian, Margaret and Beckie, themselves enjoying some out of the ordinary tunes.

 

A brief interruption over tea-time allowed us to hold our AGM and with all documentation sent out in advance and a meeting ably chaired by Lynn we were allowed to return to dancing after only twenty short minutes.

 

We return to Samlesbury on 12 November 2023 when Trevor Monson will be leading the dance, supported by Denise and Norman and, for the first time, by Sally, another member of this talented family.

 

We look forward to seeing you there!


31st July 2023

Hoghton Folk Dance Club Summer Dances at Hoghton Village Hall start on August 1st  and continue every Tuesday  7.30pm to 9.30pm until August 29th, contact Eve Calderbank 01772 731483 thomaseve@virginmedia.com.       

12th March 2023

Illness and commitments elsewhere meant that only 17 dancers came to our March meeting which was a shame; Norman Bearon had prepared a really interesting and varied programme of dance with a couple of dances that needed real brain power! Those that came thoroughly enjoyed an excellent afternoon of dance with Norman, of course, being supported with some superb music from Denise and Naomi. Sadly for us, Naomi may well be leaving us soon for pastures new – university beckons! We wish her well.  


This was, of course, our last session before we break for the summer – we meet again on the second Sunday in October, 8 October 2023, when we expect Andrew Shaw to be leading the dancing, with music from Kendal Green. The full programme for next season is elsewhere on the website.  

12th February 2023


On Sunday 12 February, thirty-three dancers came along to enjoy an excellent programme of dance lead by Ian Jones with superb music from Ian, Margaret and Fiona – Kendal Green.  

 

Our last session this season will be on Sunday 12 March 2023 when Norman Bearon will put down his instrument so that he can lead the dancing, ably accompanied by Denise and Naomi. Perhaps this may be a rehearsal since Norman, Denise and Naomi will be together again the following week at the Preston FDC dance at St Cuthbert’s in Fulwood.  

 

Come along and enjoy some excellent dancing!  

 

Planning for next season is well under way – call back shortly to the website for details.  

8th January 2023

 

We chose not to have a ‘New Year Start-up’ meeting this year since it clashed with other dance activities in the area and thus we resumed on 8 January 2023 with Bernie Culkin leading the session and Kendal Green providing the music. Twenty-five dancers came along to enjoy an excellent and, at times, challenging programme of dance from Bernie with superb music from Ian, Margaret and Fiona.  

 

The same musicians join us again for our next meeting on 12 February 2023 but on this occasion Ian Jones will also be leading the dancing; we look forward to seeing you there.  

11th December 2022

 

With seriously cold weather and a car park like a skating rink, just twenty people decided to brave the chill to be warmed by dancing for the afternoon. Trevor Monson lead the session with Denise, Norman and Naomi providing the music for another challenging but excellent afternoon of dance.  

 

In the aftermath of Covid – and remember it was only at the beginning of this year that we had to cancel sessions – we chose not to have the ‘traditional’ Christmas Party / Jacob’s Join but perhaps with everything returning to a better state of ‘normality’ next December may well be different. Opinions please!  

 

We resume on 8 January 2023 with Bernie Culkin leading the session and Kendal Green providing the music; we look forward to seeing you there.  

 

That’s Sunday 08 January 2023 at 2pm – Bernie Culkin and Kendal Green  

 

13 November 2022


Twenty-nine dancers converged on Samlesbury War Memorial Hall on Sunday last to enjoy a challenging afternoon of dance, lead by Andrew Shaw. Andrew is well known for his interpretations of dances from the 1700s and beyond and this afternoon gave us the opportunity to enjoy some of the fruits of his labours. Music today was all acoustic, provided by Kendal Green – Ian with his piano-accordion supported by Margaret and today also by Beckie whose excellent violin playing added a further air of authenticity to the sound. Another thoroughly enjoyable afternoon of dance!  

 

Our next meeting will see Trevor Monson leading the dancing, supported by Denise, Norman and Naomi and we expect another interesting Sunday afternoon. That’s on Sunday 11 December 2022 from 2 o’clock – please remember our revised starting time.  

Bill and Bob brewing up

Enjoying the dancing

Andrew Shaw called for the dancing with Ian, Margaret and Beckie playing the music

9 October 2022


Folk North West is back for another season!  

 

Not even the threat of a delayed Annual General Meeting could stop the two dozen or so dancers who came to Samlesbury for the start of the new season. Hilary Herbert challenged us with her dances making cogs turn as brains slowly engaged – very slowly in some cases. An excellent programme with music supplied by Denise and Norman with Naomi again joining them.  

 

We danced for an hour and a half before a tea break, filled this time with the AGM delayed from April. With preparation, meetings like this can be over quite quickly and twenty minutes later, we returned to dancing with more challenges and more excellent music. A thoroughly enjoyable start to the winter season.  

 

For those who are interested, the minutes of the AGM are available here on the website.  

 

Our next meeting, on November’s Second Sunday will see Andrew Shaw leading the dancing, this year with music from Kendal Green – another afternoon to look forward to.  

 

That’s Sunday 13 November 2022 at Samlesbury War Memorial Hall; come along and enjoy!  


10 April 2022

Folk North West was due to meet on 10 April for a long overdue AGM and an afternoon of dance with volunteer callers; we were aware that other events in the area would impact attendance, and so it was. Thus, no AGM, no dancing. 

As planned, our next meeting is the opening meeting of a new season on Sunday 9 October when Hilary Herbert will lead the dancing with music from Denise, Norman and Naomi; we will squeeze the AGM into the tea-break so that dancing will not be interrupted. Hopefully we will be able to appoint our new Chairman and welcome volunteers to join the committee – details will be sent via email nearer to the time. 

13 March 2022

Folk North West moved home temporarily for our March meeting, moving a couple of miles away to Mellor Brook Community Centre a slightly smaller hall, meaning the thirty dancers that made the trip were just a little bit cramped; but the move was just a one-off!  

 

Hilary Herbert was our caller providing a programme of interesting and challenging dances with music from Kendal Green making it a thoroughly enjoyable Sunday afternoon. The photo library perhaps gives a flavour of the atmosphere and the joy of being able to once again dance together.  

 

We return to Samlesbury for our next meeting on 10 April 2022 when there is the opportunity for volunteer callers to call and practice their skills with a receptive audience – well that’s the plan! We also need to hold our Annual General Meeting and even though we have not had an AGM since 2019, the intention is to keep it as short and concise as possible. Please try and attend to share your views on the running of Folk North West and support the volunteer callers.  

CHANGE OF VENUE  

 

Next week, Sunday 13 March 2022, we welcome Hilary Herbert to lead the dancing with music from Kendal Green.  

 

Because of a misunderstanding, we will NOT be at Samlesbury Memorial Hall; instead, we have had to relocate about three miles away to:  

Mellor Brook Community Centre,  7 Whalley Road,  Mellor Brook,  BB2 7PR  

 

Directions:   Coming from J30 on M6, instead of turning off the A59 to arrive at the Samlesbury Memorial Hall on Cuerdale Lane, stay on the A59 bearing left at the junction at the traffic lights next to the Hotel and Esso service station at the end of Cuerdale Lane, signposted to Whalley and Clitheroe.  

 

On the A59, travel for about 2 ½ miles – you will drive through a couple of sets of traffic lights and pass the Huntley Farm Shop and the Bluebird Inn on the left and Canberra Centre and the massive BAE Systems sites on the right – before you arrive at a large roundabout. Thwaite’s is on your left.  At the roundabout, turn right, signposted for Mellor Brook.  After about 100 yards, at the mini-roundabout, turn left.  Quite quickly, the Feilden’s Arms is on the left, go left at the mini-roundabout,  signposted “Mellor Book Community Centre”; immediately, again on the left, is the Community Centre,  just before the ‘no through road’ sign.  

 

You can park on the road beyond the ‘no through road’ sign and walk back to the centre; come in through the front door, through the atrium, to the hall beyond; come in and enjoy calling from Hilary Herbert and music from Kendal Green.  

16 February 2022  

 

Folk North West – once again, we’re back!  

 

After another break brought on by Omicron, but with numbers of infections seemingly under control, two dozen of our members met again on Sunday 13 February 2022 to carry on from where we’d left off before Christmas.  

 

It was good to be back again and those there had an excellent, enjoyable afternoon of dance lead by Ian Jones with Ian and Margaret providing the music, as they will for our next session in four weeks’ time when Hilary Herbert will be leading the dancing. That meeting is on Sunday 13 March 2022; come along and enjoy!  

7 February 2022

Just a gentle reminder that we resume this rather strange season next Sunday.   Ian Jones will be leading the session with Ian and Margaret providing the music, next Sunday 13 February 2022 from 2.30 at Samlesbury Memorial Hall.  


There’s no season membership this year and everyone will be asked to pay the visitor’s rate of £4.00 for the session. As before, we will do our best to make dancing as Covid secure as possible: for the benefit of others.

As of today, it is intended that our next session on Sunday 13 March 2022 will go ahead as planned with Hilary Herbert leading the dancing to more excellent music from Kendal Green. I have also been asked to remind dancers that the Preston FDC dance that should have been held on 19 February 2022 has been cancelled, but the club still intends that the dance on Saturday 19 March 2022 should go ahead; Judith Veevers will be calling with music from Denise and Norman.


Please, please read and understand:  

Coronavirus has caused a dramatic change in the way we live and many dancers have said they need to rebuild their confidence that the activity is ‘safe’. Considering and combining the various responses to earlier emails, the following guidelines are offered as a means of helping us all to stay ‘safe’:  

 

We are not required to adhere to any other specific measures but we all need to be aware that we are ‘feeling our way’ in a different and changed environment and we need to be tolerant of each other’s views and opinions.  

Most of all, we need to enjoy our dancing!  

**Lateral flow tests are free and can be collected from pharmacies or libraries or ordered online for home delivery in a couple of days; testing in your own home is easy, takes only a few minutes and, whilst not totally accurate, offers a measure of confidence to you and to those you meet.  

27th December 2021

Because of the Covid situation at the moment with infections rising, the Committee have decided to cancel the workshop on the 9th January. Please check nearer the time to confirm the workshop will be held on the 13th February with Ian Jones calling and music from Ian and Margaret.

12 December 2021


Folk North West is meeting again with care and with respect for current regulations and on Sunday 12 December 2021, 22 dancers converged on Samlesbury Memorial Hall to enjoy an excellent dance workshop.  

 

The afternoon gave Bernie Culkin a chance to leave her ‘zoom’ sessions and lead a live session, offering an excellent selection of interesting and challenging dances; superb live music was provided by Denise and Norman and Naomi.  

 

We want all our dancers to be safe: we ask that they be fully vaccinated and that they do a lateral flow test before attending and to stay away if they feel at all unwell. We ventilate the room and hand sanitising and washing is encouraged. Normally December is a time for Christmas parties, but today no party, no food, just a cuppa and a biscuit – but it’s great to be back together, dancing together with a live caller and live music.  

 

Thank you Bernie, Denise, Norman and Naomi for giving us an excellent afternoon; thank you too to all who attended – together we’ll get Folk Dancing up and running again.  

 

Speaking of which, on Sunday 9 January 2022, Norman Bearon will be leading the dancing with Denise and Naomi providing the music. Come along and enjoy!  

 

Two other Folk Dance events are also planned for the start of January. On Saturday 8 January, Preston FDC are hosting an evening dance at St Cuthbert’s in Fulwood, Preston with Ian Jones and Kendal Green; the following week Ormskirk FDC are hosting an afternoon workshop and an evening dance at Ormskirk Civic Centre with Andrew Shaw and DNA. For contact details for these events please visit the clubs’ websites or the Lancashire Folk web site.  

10 October 2021

 

Folk North West is back!  

 

With vaccinated members and flow tests done, nineteen of our members met again on Sunday 10 October 2021 to carry on from where we’d left off in March 2020.  

 

It was good to be back and those there had an excellent, enjoyable afternoon of dance led by Andrew Shaw. Denise and Norman and Naomi provided the music, as they will for our next session in four week’s time when Trevor Monson will be leading the dancing.  

 

That meeting is on Sunday 14 November 2021; come along and enjoy!  


08 October 2021  

 

Folk North West – 10th October 2021  

 

Thank you to all those who have responded to my previous email and for those who intend to come on Sunday, we look forward to welcoming you and we’ll do our best to ensure you have an enjoyable and safe afternoon of dance.  

 

For those who haven’t responded, just a further reminder that Andrew Shaw will be leading the dancing with Denise and Norman and Naomi providing the music, this  Sunday 10 March 2021 from 2.30 at Samlesbury Memorial Hall.  

 

There’s no season membership this year and everyone will be asked to pay the visitor’s rate of £4.00 for the session. We will do our best to make dancing as Covid secure as possible: for the benefit of others, please read and act upon the notes at the bottom of this email.  

 

. . . and a couple of other reminders . . .  

 

With groups around the district only just starting to resume, it seems like a good idea to make sure you know of a couple of events coming up to note in your diary:  

 

On Saturday 13 November, Trevor Monson will be with Kendal Green at Ormskirk  

 

On Saturday 20 November, Lynn and Jeff Hoyle will be with Pendragon at Preston  

 

For full details, please see the appropriate handbills or the Lancashire Folk web site.  

8th March 2020

This afternoon, more than thirty dancers met to enjoy the fun, and at times quite challenging, dances selected by Hilary Herbert. With her selection of dances old and new we were put through our paces with some wonderful accompaniment from Kendal Green – Ian and Margaret, today augmented by the lovely violin of Fiona.

Mindful of the committee that voluntarily runs Samlesbury Memorial Hall we were also able to help them with a donation of £50 towards their planned defibrillator.

Our next meeting is Sunday 19 April 2020, the THIRD Sunday in the month and the week after Easter; this will be a volunteers’ afternoon, interrupted briefly by our AGM. Come along and enjoy, particularly if you would like to call a dance or two!

9th February 2020

A couple of dozen of our members braved the atrocious weather conditions, the wind and the flooding to arrive at Samlesbury for an excellent afternoon of dance. They were handsomely rewarded with some really interesting dances from Trevor Monson, some new, some not so new, some simple and one of Colin Wallace’s rather less than simple creations. All this to the accomplished accompaniment of Denise and Norman Bearon; an enjoyable afternoon for all! 

Our next meeting is Sunday 08 March 2020 when Hilary Herbert will be leading the dancing with music provided by Kendal Green; come along and enjoy!

12th January 2020

A new year and a new line-up at Folk North West! Norman Bearon stepped back from playing, to lead the dancing as thirty-plus dancers were put through their paces in an afternoon of interesting and challenging dance. New, too, was the combination of Denise accompanied by her grand-daughter, a talented young recorder player adding an extra dimension to Denise’s excellent music; all in all a superb combination that we hope will return next season.

Our next meeting is Sunday 09 February 2020 when Denise will be re-joined by Norman to provide the music for a programme of dance presented by Trevor Monson; come along and enjoy!

1st January 2020

Happy 2020! A couple of dozen dancers and callers gathered at Samlesbury to spend the afternoon welcoming the New Year.  Half a dozen of us exercised our calling skills providing a collection of dances ranging from old-English traditional to some modern Scottish and quite a few stops in-between.

Our thanks to Roy Smith and Hoghton FDC for the use of their sound equipment.

Our next meeting is Sunday 12 January 2020 when Norman Bearon will be leading the session with music provided by Denise and Naomi; come along and enjoy the dancing.

10 November 2019

This was our second dance of the season and was well supported with 41 people attending and we had an enjoyable afternoon dancing to the music of Kendal Green - Ian and Margaret Jones with Ian calling for us as well. We had a nice variety of dances, some of them exercising our brains a lot which I am sure is good for us and some not quite as difficult.

Bob worked hard supplying a drink and biscuits to everyone before the dance started and at the interval.

Hilary Herbert will be calling at our next dance on the 8th December using CDs and so it will be good if you can bring some food along for the Jacob's Join.

13 October 2019

More than forty dancers welcomed Andrew Shaw to lead an excellent first session of our new season on 13 October with dances researched and presented in a style that only Andrew can do. The music for this session was provided by Denise and Norman, today with their grand-daughter Naomi making her first appearance as a FNW musician – she is a welcome addition!

Our next session is on Sunday 10 November when Ian Jones will be leading the session and, with Margaret, providing the music too. Come along, take part and enjoy!

14 April 2019

Our last meeting of the season saw a score of dancers helping callers, who in the main are less experienced, gain a little more practice of calling, but with dancers who are both patient and knowledgeable; half a dozen members accepted the opportunity – with a little expert help from Hilary completing the line-up. Over tea, we sat down to discuss the affairs and running of the group at our Annual General Meeting, learning that overall our membership and attendances are up and with help from Lancashire Folk our finances are, for the time being, stable. The new programme can now be viewed on this website  and we are looking forward to another season of interesting and challenging dances. There’s just the little matter of Summer. . . .

We meet again on 13 October when Andrew Shaw will be leading our session with Denise and Norman providing the music.

10 March 2019

On Sunday 10 March, Jan Dale took us a walk down memory lane, reflecting on the many, many dances she’s called over the years and not only just at Folk North West. She reminded us of some of the dances she’s written, used today by callers far and wide. She reminded us of calling to 78s, then 45s, then LPs before more modern digital technology took over. She reminded us of the musicians she had called with over the years – today it was Denise and Norman Bearon providing an excellent accompaniment to her calls.  This was Jan’s last Sunday calling at Folk North West and as she celebrates her Diamond Anniversary with John and looks forward to a quieter life.

Sue Stapledon

On a far more sombre note, we are saddened to hear of the death of Sue Stapledon.

In the days of the Folk North West display team Sue, as part of the West Kirby Band, was an important part of the set-up and always reliable - as well as being a very fine fiddle and concertina player. As Folk North West morphed into the Sunday afternoon practice club we now know, Sue was THE musician, with help from a variety of others.

She had been ill for some years and had been in hospital since well before Christmas. She was discharged a few weeks ago into a nursing home but deteriorated during that time and had to be rushed back into hospital where she died in the early hours of March 27; she was aged just 58.

Our sincere condolences go to her whole family at this sad time.

10 February 2019

Just what is a Dolphin Loop? And Pothooks aren’t that common either! Trevor Monson used both these unusual moves in his Folk North West workshop yesterday afternoon, to the delight of over forty dancers. With excellent (but very patient) music from Ian and Margaret Jones we had three hours of challenging but thoroughly enjoyable dancing. Some of the dances were little known, old but rarely seeing the light of day; at least one was on its first time out – newly written and needing testing! This is what Folk North West is about – workshops for the improvement of dancing, dancers and callers, and that’s what we saw yesterday.

Next month we welcome Jan Dale to our workshop with music provided by Norman and Denise Bearon; sadly this will be Jan’s last time calling for us so come along, welcome her and give her a happy retirement send off! Sunday 10 March 2019 at 2.30pm at Samlesbury Memorial Hall.

13 January 2019

What better way to spend a cold and wet Sunday afternoon than dance away the winter blues? Nearly forty of us decided to do just that at the Folk North West January meeting. Ian and Margaret Jones (Kendal Green) provided the music and Ian called a variety of interesting and, at times, quite challenging dances. What inspires a dance? Flowers, famous buildings, even the journey to work through the Cheshire  countryside – we had them all this afternoon and we now look forward to next month when Trevor Monson will be calling and Ian and Margaret will again provide the music. Come and join us!

1st January 2019

17 people turned up for our New Year Startup which was a good number as we could make two four couple sets leaving one over to call for us, and also were able to have dances in other formations, although some had to sit out for three couple dances. Bob brewed up at the interval and it was an enjoyable afternoon with eight callers.

18th November 2018

Thirty or so dancers braved the bitter cold to come to Samlesbury to enjoy a challenging afternoon of dance lead by Hilary Herbert. As well as some of her own dances, Hilary used dances old and new from elsewhere, to give us a varied programme full of fun but also full of thought - some dances are not at all easy and Ian and Margaret Jones, who provided the excellent music, at times needed the patience of Job! Hilary returns next month to call at our pre-Christmas get together, this time drawing on her collection of CDs to provide the music. We're having a Jacob's Join party, as well as more challenging dancing. Come along and enjoy!

8th April 2018

Not the most successful dance we have had with only nine people attending and Dorothy sitting out as she was struggling walking. Three possible reasons, it was the AGM and people sometimes like avoiding those, it was volunteer callers rather than a booked caller and it was a big folk dance event at Casterton which some of our dancers were attending. However, we had three callers and were able to have three couple dances and even four couple with the caller dancing and it turned out to be a pleasant afternoon.

11th March 2018

30 or so dancers arrived ready to have their brains excercised, as well as their bodies, by some challenging dances from Jan Dale with lovely music, as always, from Ian and Margaret.

11th February 2018

We were a little short on numbers at the start of the dance but then we had some more arrivals who had unfortunately been in a traffic jam on the motorway as there had been an accident so we ended up with 31 which is a good number. Trevor called a variety of dances and it was a pleasant way to pass on a very Wintry Sunday afternoon and we enjoyed listening to the music of Ian and Margaret. Bill and Bob once more brewed up as people arrived and in the interval.

14th January 2018

Andrew must have brought his fan club because we had 39 people at the dance which is a record for this season. Andrew once again took us through some challenging dances which must do our bodies and brains more good than just sitting in front of a television screen and Norman and Denise played some lovely music for us. Bill and Bob did the brewing up when people first arrived and then another one in the interval.

10th December 2017

Only 14 people turned up for our Christmas Party Dance, but there had been snow a couple of days before, although it had cleared in Preston but not in every area so people could have been put off travelling. It would have been nice to have more there but we managed to do lots of dancing with eight different callers. With not as many people it also meant there wasn't as much food on the table, but, of course, not as many people to eat it! However,it worked out well as we had a nice variety of different savoury and sweet food. 

Bill Barcroft

Vanda Musai

Lynn Hoyle

Bob Hayes

Linda Simans

Kath Etchells

David Thomson

Roy Smith

Buffet

12th November 2017

28 people attended our November dance, just one less than October. Andrew Shaw was the caller with Norman and Denise Bearon playing for us again. Like Hilary the month before Andrew certainly gave our brains some exercise as well!

8th October 2017

We made a good start to our new season with 29 people enjoying interesting and sometimes challenging dances called by Hilary Herbert with music by Norman and Denise Bearon.