Morris dancing in London

My At Home In London  location in Hampstead was only a few blocks from the river walk.   This pedestrian path went from my Hampstead location east towards central London and West.     I hiked parts of the path on both days I stayed at property #305.   Had I stayed longer at this location I would have spent far more time on the ‘walk’ even trying to take the route to Richmond.     There were pubs along the route that were full of locals every night, spilling onto the lawn.  
As I walked the 1 or 2 miles from Hammersmith town center I heard music, not bag pipes but something I recognized and singing.   Then I saw men dancing……  something like a skipping  version of the American square dance.  

My host suggested it could be Morris dancing……..have you heard about Morris dancing?

From Wikipedia I found the history of Morris dancing:

today, there are six predominant styles of Morris dancing, and different dances or traditions within each style named after their region of orign. 

  • North West morris: more military in style and often processional, that developed out of the mills in the North-West of England in the 19th and early 20th centuries.
  • Border Morris from the English-Welsh border: a simpler, looser, more vigorous style, traditionally danced with blackened faces.
  • Longsword dancing from Yorkshire and south Durham, danced with long, rigid metal or wooden swords for, usually, 6 or 8 dancers.
  • Rapper from Northumberland and Co. Durham, danced with short flexible sprung steel swords, usually for 5 dancers.
  • Molly Dancing from Cambridgeshire. Traditionally danced on Plough Monday, they were Feast dances that were danced to collect money during harsh winters. One of the dancers would be dressed as a woman, hence the name.
  • Cotswold morris: dances from an area mostly in Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire; an established misnomer, since the Cotswolds overlap this region only partially. Normally danced with handkerchiefs or sticks to accompany the hand movements. Dances are usually for 6 or 8 dancers, but solo and duo dances (known as single or double jigs) also occur

Published by Lee Laurino

A traveler not a tourist, searching for experiences not in travel books. Solo traveler who travels as long and far as possible sharing photos of the people and places I discover

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