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ABOUT THE SIDE
Morris Dancing is an old tradition, found throughout the country, and our aim is to preserve our heritage. The Jenny Pipes dancers practice and perform traditional Cotswold and Border Morris dances.
We meet for practice on Thursday evenings at Stoke Prior village hall (near Leominster), and we may also be seen performing at a pub near you on some Thursdays during the summer. In addition to practice nights, we are available for bookings for your events. These often include fayres and fetes, WI and other organisations, agricultural shows and Wassails.
The outfits ('kit') we wear are based on the three, bold colours of Leominster; red, blue and yellow. Each white shirt is topped with an individual waistcoat, made to a design chosen by each dancer and complimented with ribbons. Black trousers are under our traditional bell pads, again complimented with Leominster coloured ribbons. You'll see that one of our members wears additional costume.....that denotes a particular role within the Side, known as 'The Fool'. It's her role to introduce us to you at the events and to explain about the dances we do.
As well as dressing in the Leominster colours, you'll also spot the 'Leominster Knot' on our outfits and in one of our dances! The intricate, medieval knot has passed down through the generations and can be seen in many aspects of town life, including its use at the regular Leominster Festivals. You can also see it at the top and bottom of each of our web pages!
The Cotswold traditions we dance are mainly Brackley, Stanton Harcourt, Ducklington and Ilmington. Welsh Border dances represent our more local traditions, some created in Dilwyn, Brimfield and Bromsberrow Heath as well as occasionally reflecting local individual characters! Cotswold dances are often danced with handkerchiefs and Border dances more often with sticks, although many of the dances do overlap in style.
We also perform a dance specifically choreographed for us, which is not a traditional Cotswold Morris dance but is derived from Leominster and a particular part of its history. This dance is called (unsurprisingly perhaps) “Jenny Pipes”.
Currently our dances are accompanied by a piano-accordion and a melodeon, wonderful folk sounds that compliment the dances. We always welcome new members to the side, dancers or musician; and if you can do both, you’re more than welcome! Contact details are below.
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