News and Views

Morris dancers and blind footballers in mass brawl | Suffolk Gazette


By Hugh Dunnett
Crime Reporter

Police were called after a mass brawl broke out in a pub car park between a group of morris dancers and a blind football team.

The footballers were enjoying a match on the village green at Rattlesden, near Stowmarket, using a ball with a bell in it so they could keep up with play.

But all hell broke out when the morris dancers began performing at a nearby pub.

A player kicked the ball off the pitch towards the Brewers Arms, and then mistook the morris dancers’ uniform bells for the one in the ball.

He promptly kicked one of the dancers in the shin, sending him flying over a table and crashing into a flower pot. A hanging basket then fell on his head.

More blind footballers then joined the melee, kicking out at the bells and then being surprised when they were punched by furious morris men.

The brawl was only stopped when the referee caught up and blew his whistle loudly.


Three morris men suffered severely bruised legs, while one of the footballers had a cut caused by being hit on the head with a morris dancer’s stick.

With everyone blaming each other, the police were called to sort out the mess.

A Suffolk police spokesman said: “It was certainly an unsual call from one of the locals in the pub. By the time we got there it had all calmed down, and both sides realised how the mistake had been made.

“In fact they had made up and were all enjoying a drink together, although a couple were still being patched up by the landlord’s wife.

“We took no further action, but recommended that the morris men did not use bells on their uniforms when the blind footballers were playing nearby.”

Source: Morris dancers and blind footballers in mass brawl | Suffolk Gazette

Shirley Collins’ 80th Birthday

The EFDSS are celebrating Shirley Collins’ 80th on Saturday 31 October at Cecil Sharp House

The grand dame of folk music, Shirley Collins celebrates her 80th birthday and the launch of her new book at Cecil Sharp House.

The event will feature exclusive readings from Shirley’s forthcoming book By the Lines of his Hand, as well as world-premiere previews of The Ballad of Shirley Collins, a forthcoming documentary partly inspired by her 2005 book, America Over the Water.

President of EFDSS since 2008, Shirley first became involved in the folk music scene in the early 1950s meeting the likes of Bob Copper, Ewan McColl and Bert Lloyd.

Collaborating with a variety of artists including her sister Dolly and Davy Graham, Shirley released a number of albums through the 1960s and 1970s including Anthems in Eden(1969) with Dolly and Early English musician David Munrow, which is considered by many to be her seminal album. During the 1970s she was a member of The Albion Band and the Etchingham Steam Band before retiring from singing.

4-6pm Shirley presents extracts from her new book, By the Lines of his Hand
7.30pm Concert and film extracts
Artists include
  • Shirley Collins
  • Billy Bragg
  • Martin Wyndham Read
  • Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker
  • The Askew Sisters
  • Jackie Oates

You can get more information from Cecil Sharp House.

Lake District Folk Weekend

We’ve just learned about the Lake District Folk Weekend which happens this weekend..

Based around Hawkshead Brewery’s ‘Beer Hall’, The Lake District Folk Weekend takes place 7, 8 & 9th August 2015 in the picturesque Lakeland village of Staveley, nr Kendal.

Staveley is perfectly situated; being only 10 minutes from the West Coast Mainline on the ‘Lakes Line’ to Windermere. It is also served by frequent buses (Lancaster to Keswick) and has a variety of independent shops and restaurants. It is also the perfect base for walking & cycling, with both long and short routes for all abilities. Staveley is at the start of the beautiful Kentmere Valley – one of the most picturesque yet frequently forgotten valleys in the district.

Concerts will be held Friday night in the beautiful, intimate Staveley Roundhouse Theatre and Hawkshead Brewery’s flagship tasting space – The Beer Hall!

Saturday sees concerts and sessions in various venues throughout the village before the evening ‘big session’ for all until late!

Sunday will see a morning (singing?) ramble, an afternoon singing session followed by a closing Open Mic ‘Sunday Session’ at the Beer Hall.

For more information please check the website or call the festival hotline: 015395 28 808.